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Why Learn Chinese?

Seems that I’ve been talking to a lot of people about language learning lately. So thought I’d try to assemble some of those conversations into a blog post. I live in one of the mission fields where the vast majority of missionaries do not learn to speak the native language. There are at least a […]

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East Meets West: A Great Gulf Fixed?

You may have seen the recent East meets West infographic by Yang Liu that is making its rounds across the internet. As attractively designed and effectively communicative as any infographic that I’ve seen. Designed by a Chinese woman whose family moved to Germany when she was 14, the main panels of the infographic put various […]

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Category Creation

John Piper tweeted (yes, that’s a word in my vocabulary now) yesterday, “Harder and just as urgent, alongside contextualization, is category creation.” Almost all modern missionary training emphasizes the importance of contextualized ministry. That is, as we enter another culture, we must give careful thought to how to communicate the Gospel so that it is […]

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Evangelism: How Long Does It Take? (Part 3)

In the last post in this thread (read part 1 here and part 2 here) I shared some observations about sharing the Gospel with Chinese people. Thinking of evangelism in China as ‘fast’ or thinking of it as ‘slow’ are both inadequate and potentially harmful to formulating a healthy missionary strategy. Granted, then, that (1) […]

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Cultural Orphans

To a Chinese person, the idea of accepting the message of Christianity can produce some real anxiety. One of the main reasons for these feelings is a fear of isolation. After all, many Chinese people have no family members who are Christians, no co-workers who are Christians, no neighbors who are Christians, and no friends […]

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Evangelism: How Long Does It Take? (Part 2)

So we’re talking about how long it takes for the average Chinese person to make a decision about the Gospel message. Last post looked at two extreme positions, one of which says that Chinese people are incredibly open to the Gospel and decide to trust Christ very quickly, and the opposite one which says that […]

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Evangelism: How Long Does It Take?

One of the more common questions I field about ministry in mainland China is about how long it takes the average Chinese person to make a decision about the Gospel? While plenty of anecdotes might be supplied, the question remains a difficult one to answer. I do care to attempt a response, though, because questions […]

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The Riddle’s Answer is in Your Heart

One of the questions that comes up most often about missions in China is about cultural adaptation. Probably due to the exoticism of China in their eyes, many Westerners find it hard to imagine themselves ‘living like the Chinese.’ While there is certainly a good and right place for studying new cultures, such efforts have […]

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Do’s and Don’t’s of Learning Chinese #4

Here ya go… last couple thoughts about learning Chinese. Events of the past week kinda put this on the back burner – but here’s some ideas about the progress of the Chinese student. 7. DO NOT STOP LEARNING Satisfaction is the enemy of the language student, and it normally rears its head after many months […]

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Do’s and Don’t’s of Learning Chinese #3

This post is about where you’re going to get your instruction… 5. DO NOT TRUST A SCHOOL TO TEACH YOU The complex nature of language learning makes all attempts to systematize it near futile. Nevertheless, many students enroll in educational institutions and never give their language progress another thought! This is so dangerous. Please remember […]

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