Language Evaluation | Month 12

1) Preaching. My goal when starting out was to be able to preach for at least 20 minutes after one year of language study and I was able to reach that goal at the end of this month. This was the most comfortable that I felt preaching out of the six opportunities that I had over the last year. Hopefully, I will continue to increase and add 5 minutes next month, now that I finally hit the 20 minute mark!

2) English Fast. My English fast that I started a year ago is finally over. When we started language school I tried to fast from English music, TV, movies, podcast etc. The exception being days off in which anything in English was allowed. I was faithful to this for the most part but wasn’t supper strict about it towards the end. I also did end up reading my Bible in English for a long time and read a book or two that helped me in some personal areas. Also, I was suppose to listen and/or watch an hour of Chinese everyday but that part didn’t go so well.

If anything this helped me to start off strong and also create good habits that will continue even now that the English fast is over.

3) Bible. Reading and studying the Bible consistently has help me understand the preaching more. Also, each day I am and getting more comfortable with the “Bible Language.”

4) Characters / Listening. I will be starting to learn these more consistently starting in month thirteen. Also, I am hoping to put more focus on listening.

5) Progress, 1 Year. It is amazing to look and see the progress the Lord has allowed us to make over the past year. I can remember my first days of language school just like it was yesterday and remember all the frustration, all the down days, the valleys, the longs hours, and not being able to say a thing. With twelve months ahead of us I know the way is still long, but at least I can order food now :)

2 thoughts on “Language Evaluation | Month 12

  1. Tom

    Mr. Project China: It’s nice to hear that you have reached the 20 minute mark. I have a recommendation for you, if you want to hear me out.

    Record your whatever you are doing now. If you are reading the Bible in front of the people NOW, then record that. If you are preaching in front of the people NOW, then record that. Whatever you are doing, record now. That way you have something to go on. Since there has been progress, that is a sign that progress will continue. Then, in the future, you can again record your “then” level of Mandarin, and you have the two to compare. For that record, you don’t have to have only two recordings, you can have a number of recordings throughout the coming years.

    You are probably thinking that you’ve GOT TO IMPROVE, but that takes time. Recording your various levels will give you something to laugh at in the future.

    BTW, it’s not just the 20 minute mark, it the quality of the 20 minutes that also count.

    Perhaps, you are doing the recordings already. Just a thought.


    1. Mark (China Ramblings!) Post author

      Thanks for that advice Tom!

      I personally don’t record what I am preaching but a bunch of people do and then someone usually gives me a copy.

      Yes, I am also aware of that 20 minutes isn’t a big deal if the quality isn’t getting better each time. There are plenty of ways to manipulate time to “see progress” but I am not trying to increase time for a test or to impress, I am increasing time so I can preach, which means I am trying to improve in time and quality. I write out my sermons, so each month the word count increases so that I know I am adding more content and not just talking slower. Also, I have notice that I am speaking faster with means more words per minute….so even if I add more content I could go for the same time because my ability to speak is increasing.

      Sounds like you have learned a language before, have your learned Mandarin?

      Again, thanks for the thought!


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