Tuesday, April 5, 2011

On the Other Hand....

As much as Derek Sivers makes some good points about following and, in particular the "first follower", I think he's missed an important part of the equation.  Mark 4:24 tells us to be careful what we hear and Luke 8:18 tells us to be careful of how we hear.  What the vision is, how we see it and who it comes from are as important as who heeds it. So, without the right leader and the right vision, following is inconsequential.  The Romans considered Jesus and his followers to be a wacko cult.  The Jews agreed, but considered Him sacrilegious as well.  But the fact is, only He could fulfill more than 60 of the Old Testament prophecies for the Messiah.  Certainly stellar credentials to be a leader.  And His vision? That we love God and love people.  In that order.  And, the more of us did that, the more our present life would improve.  Possibly in physical ways, definitely emotionally and spiritually.  And the right life changes would lead to eternal life changes.  A true leader with a Godly vision that produces eternal results.  Not a leader and vision made by followers.  But followers blessed by  the vision of the Son of God.


I've been pretty open about the fact that I'm a techie.  The Word of God guides my life, technology helps keep it in order.  Where the two meet can be really interesting.  So, periodically, we're going to share some of the things that we like and think might benefit your walk, as well.

Since we mentioned the Word of God, I'd like to focus on a couple of my favorite smartphone Bible apps.  These make having the Word handy a really easy thing.  And, even if I carry nothing else with me, my phone is always there.  I have had Palm PDAs, along with smartphones running several versions of Windows Mobile and Android.  And I now carry a Blackberry Torch.  

Just like there are great utilities and great productivity apps for those, one of the things I'm beginning to appreciate is that some things just need to have cross-platform compatibility.  So, while there are Bible apps that are limited to one phone platform or another or are much more complete on one platform, but not even close on another, I believe that a purchased Bible library ought to to be usable on your next phone, whether it's the same smartphone platform or not.  So we're going to look at two apps that meet that criteria.

The first is BibleReader from Olivetree Bible Software.  I first discovered this app when I had a Palm T5 PDA.  And I've since used it on subsequent smartphones.  The BibleReader and some of the resources are free.  Others require license payments.  The app functions much the same on all smartphones, with some variations that are platform dependent.  And your purchased study library can transfer from one smartphone to another, even if each runs on a different OS.  The program is very easy to use, with an extensive library of study tools, devotionals and literature available.  It allows you to have all you need to study the Word with just your phone, a pen and paper.  The one shortcoming I've found is that I can't navigate around the Bible quickly enough in service to make it usable there, but that may just be me.  It is the most complete and easy to use cross-platform phone app I've found for study and devotionals. You can check out the possibilities for yourself at http://olivetree.com.

The second Bible app is YouVersion.  I discovered this one when I bought my Blackberry, so I can't vouch for the similarities across various platforms.  But, since it is strictly a Bible reading app, it's likely there aren't many variations between platforms.  And there a large number of translations in a variety of languages.  Some are downloadable onto your phone, others require continuing data access.  And, even accessing books online, it's quick enough to use in service or Bible study with lots of verse lookup.  And, best of all, it's completely free.  Go to http://www.youversion.com/mobile for more info.  To install the appropriate app version for your phone, point your phone's browser at http://youversion.com/download.  If there's no usable app for your particular phone, there is a mobile web version at http://m.youversion.com and a pc web-based version at http://www.youversion.com .


Remember.  Love God, love people.  In that order.  And don't forget to pray for Libby.

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