Hello, my name is Mark and China Ramblings! is my blog. I am a Christian, Husband, Father, Missionary and Blogger. My family and I are on an amazing journey to give God the maximum glory with our lives. Our passion is Jesus and our desire is that the world will know Him as Lord!
My family and I serve as Church-planting Missionaries to the country of China (Project China). This blog is an outflow of our life and ministry. I hope that it will help, encourage, exhort and edify those who read it.
If you are interested in China, missions or staying up-to-date with our family and ministry then this blog is for you! Not everything fits neatly into one of those topics but I hope you will stick around long enough to see what the Lord is doing in China and how He can use you!
I usually post a couple of times a week.
Below are some of the top post from this blog. You can get access to all of my other post by going through the categories or series. Also, you can use the search feature in the top right hand corner to find something specific.
Missions Articles and Practical Advice:
✪ China & Bible Smuggling
✪ Thoughts from What Happened Sunday
✪ “We’re Missionaries, it’s an occupational hazard.”
At the age of 17 I made the best decision of my life! I repented of my sin and put my faith in Jesus! Shortly after, I knew I wanted to serve Him with my life (in missions). At the age of 19, I surrendered to go to China.
After high school, I started to attended Bible College. I didn’t fit the mold for traditional education and in the summer of 2005 I took a six month missions trip to Peru, South America (where my life would be changed).
I met a man, a missionary, a mentor. I met someone who was willing to not see me for who I was then, but what I could be. I met someone willingly to invest in my life.
My passion was ignited. I wanted to love Jesus more and see the world reached with the gospel. The very small flame that already caused me to surrender my life…now was spreading!
My excitement and passion weren’t enough to go running to the mission field just yet. I knew that I needed more training.
After I returned to America, I served and trained at Vision Baptist Church (2006-2009). During my time there I was mentored, trained and involved in the ministry.
In May of 2007, I graduated from the Our Generation Training Center. I also met my wife and was married in August of the same year.
We started full-time deputation in January 2009 and moved to China in August of 2010 to start language school while working with our co-laborers (2010-2012).
Now, my wife and our two kids are living in N.E. China watching God do great things and planting our first church (2013-present).
✪ Before I Trusted Christ
I was born in Middletown, Ohio. I was raised in a Christian home. As far back as I can remember, I was in Church. My parents always took me and my brothers to church. I grew up with knowledge of God.
When I was in the third grade, everything I knew changed. My family moved cities and houses. The church family that I knew, all of my friends, my favorite Sunday School Teacher, all came to an end. I was scared and didn’t want to move. I remember being upset about after to leave everything I knew, but the Lord knew what He was doing.
✪ How I Trusted Christ
After we moved cities, we started attending a new church. I remember feeling out-of-place because I didn’t know anyone. We started a new school and no one that went to my school went to my new church. So I really didn’t know anyone. But at this new church God started doing something in my life that I never felt before…conviction.
During children’s church we would go upstairs and there would be singing, puppets, and at the end a man would come out and preach the bible to us and give an invitation. After a few weeks of attending there I started feeling really uncomfortable during the invitation. It was like the preacher was talking to just me. I knew that I wanted to go up, but I was so scared. My heart would start to race. Week after week, I would just sit there. Finally, one week I decided that I would go forward and get saved. The preacher took me into the back room and explained the gospel to me.
The years following up through my teen years, I struggled with assurance of my salvation because I didn’t remember what was said or the prayer that I prayed. I was so afraid that at night I would ask God to save me before I went to bed and purposely say it out loud so God knew I wasn’t ashamed of Him. I would say that I loved Him.
At the age of seventeen, I decided to get the doubting settled. One evening, I got down on my knees on the side of my bed and settled it at the foot of the cross. I told to Lord, I was sorry for doubting and wanted it to be settled, and if I wasn’t saved I wanted to be and wanted to live for Him, no longer with anymore doubts and was trusting in Him and His word. I took myself through the several bible verses and placed my faith in Him.
I am no longer confused about my salvation and here is how I know, as I am writing this today that I am a born again Christian: I realized that I am a sinner and that I had done wrong against a holy God; because of my sins I was going to die and go to hell; but God loves me so much, that He gave His only begotten Son, Jesus, that whosoever believes in Him would not perish but have everlasting life. Jesus died on the cross for my sin and then rose from the dead three days later. Therefore, I confessed and repented of my sin; I put my faith and trust in Jesus Christ alone. Jesus took my sin and gave me His righteousness. I am now a new creature in Christ, not by my works or anything good in me, but because of Jesus Christ.
✪ After I Trusted Christ
That was my testimony from Elementary School to High School. During that time I often stumbled, there would be ups and downs in my Christian walk, times where I rebelled and times where I didn’t. After high school, I had my share of trials through and the Lord was teaching me many things. He is still teaching me, maturing me and molding me into His image.
Missions: One thing that I remember growing up in this church was the missionaries that would come through. I remember their slide show, pictures and how they would stand before the church and plead for the people of the country they were representing; the need for the gospel to be preached there.
I remember how they said they had no one to tell them of Jesus and only if they had someone to tell them the gospel they could get saved. I thought in my mind that I could do that; I could go to a foreign land and tell someone of Jesus and what he did for them. It was a dream the Lord put in my heart to do and it was like something that I always knew, that I was supposed to be a missionary.
My pastor would stand in the pulpit and say that he was praying for God to raise at least one missionary up out of our church. In my heart I would always respond, “that’s me!”
My youth pastor was a great example of a man of God and God used him greatly in shepherding me through my teens. He wasn’t afraid to tell the truth or preach God’s word how it is. One year at youth camp, I was tired of living the Christian life I was living and He told us to come forward and write on the cement ground one thing that were going to give up and draw a line and say were weren’t going to cross back over it when we got home. I knew there was only one thing that I needed to give up and that was my life, I wrote, “Use Me” really big and circled it. I told God I wanted to be a missionary. Finally, when I was sixteen at the missions conference at our church I made it public that I had surrendered my life to be a missionary.
Now, I am serving with my family in China, living the victorious Christian life.
In my free time, I enjoy reading, writing, technology and spending time with family and friends.
If you would like to contact me you can send an email.
When I started the blog, I didn’t know what I was doing so my scope was broad and “Ramblings!” seemed like a suitable title as I posted about whatever I wanted. My first few post were quotes by missionaries to China and what the blog was about. But my first real update was on August 22nd, 2008 entitle “Our First Month!”
My goal at first was to post at least once a week. Then I tried to post several times a week. When we were raising funds, I even had a goal to write about every church that we visited (and I did). When we moved to China, I had a goal to post about five times a week, Monday-Friday. This is when I started to really write about things that I was experiencing and thinking through on the mission field.
As time passed, I narrowed my scope and focus down to several main categories that I liked to wrote about. But I needed to revamp and I needed a break. Thus, on May 21, 2012 I pressed the pause button.
I started to make changes to the blog to better fit my new focus. I went through all my old post deleting over 600 post that didn’t meet my new criteria. I changed the name to “China Ramblings!” and simplified its look and use. I also prepared new post and pages for the relaunch
On September 3rd, I relaunched the blog and started posting 2-3 times a week Monday, Wednesday, and/or Friday.
Through my time blogging, I have been constantly reminded of the power and influence in writing and communicating through this means. In the future, I hope to continue to do so, Lord willing, and make a difference in the lives of those who read this blog.
This blog uses WordPress (self-hosted). My theme is a customized version of Attitude Pro. Hosting and Technical Support through Synergy Technical Services. Practical blog ideas and help for disclaimers and permissions policy from Michaelhyatt.com. For more practical attributions or resources, read my post entitled “Some Practical Missionary Resources“.
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