Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Teach Me, O Lord….

Psalm 119:33-35 HE. Teach me, O LORD, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end.  Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.  Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight.

It’s such a blessing to hear from God through His Word.  There is comfort, edification, healing, power in that Word.  Thinking of that, it’s been awhile since I’ve shown my techie side to discuss some of the things that help me stay in the Word.  So, I thought I’d get into that.  Today, there are two software gems that I’ve mentioned before.  We’ll look at them, again, because there’s fresh news.

The first is YOUversion Bible.  It’s probably the most broad based in the platforms it covers.  If it’s a smartphone, there’s probably a YOUversion app for it.  The number of translations available is amazing.  And it’s free. 

Once installed, YOUversion is ready to go.  It uses your data plan to bring you whatever verse in whatever Bible version you want.  Can’t have your phone on in church or you have a small data plan?  No problem.  Some of the Bibles are downloadable so you can access them from storage on your phone.  But, some of those need to be downloaded at the time they’re available for download.  They can’t just be transferred to an additional device at a later date. 

I suggest you sign up for the YOUversion email newsletter so you get all the news of things going on and when various Bibles become available for download.  That’s usually a very short time.  The mobile app can be downloaded at: http://www.youversion.com/mobile.  And, for those using a PC or a mobile device that needs web access, http://www.youversion.com takes you right to the online version.

Next. Olive Tree Bible software.  I’ve been using this app since the Palm Tunsten T5 pda came out.  That was back in 2004.  Like YOUversion, the mobile app covers a variety of platforms.  The difference is in the resources.  Where YOUversion (intentionally) focuses on Bibles and reading plans, Olive Tree has an ever expanding variety of study tools.  Some of the Bibles and study tools are free, others are not. 

Some of Olive Tree’s pricing is closer to hardcover prices than you might expect.  But, if you’ve got multiple devices, that’s OK.  A lot of software is cheaper, but you get to pay for a copy on each device you use it on.  You buy a set of books, you can carry it around (not likely) or leave it in one place, but you still have one set.  Olive Tree has a different model.  The software, along with either the KJV or the ASV, is free.  Any paid resources you buy can go on all of them, simultaneously.

You install the appropriate app version for the platform – iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows and Mac.  From the software, you log into your account.  Any free items you want are downloadable to that device…in every case.  The same is true for any resources you’ve paid for.  Do you have a computer, a tablet and a smartphone?  Load ‘em up.  They all can have your Olive Tree library at the same time.  That makes the Olive Tree software and resources very affordable.  Especially if you get their email newsletter and keep up with the various sales.

It looks like we've gone long enough for today.  In the next several weeks, we’ll look at some hardware and more software.  One warning.  I’m not totally unbiased.  What I discuss is what I know.  It’s either free or I’ve already purchased and used it myself.  There are decisions that I’ve made based on price or availability for a particular platform.  So, you’ll find me reviewing things that work at a more affordable price, on platforms I use.  I may also comment on more expensive things that I’ve researched.  But those aren’t likely to be reviewed unless someone starts giving me review copies.  And all of that will be sporadic.  Our focus is still on our relationship with God.  But, semiregularly, we’ll look at some of the things that can help.

Psalm 119 speaks about getting closer to God through His Word.  It’s huge and it’s precise in its message.  And that’s our God – larger than life, precise in our options to be in unity with Him, couched in unending sacrificial love.  Let’s continue in growing together in getting to know Him and His love.

Psalm 119:57-59 CHETH. Thou art my portion, O LORD: I have said that I would keep thy words.  I intreated thy favour with my whole heart: be merciful unto me according to thy word.  I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy testimonies.

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