Friday, March 30, 2012

My Smartphone Keeps Me Connected . . . to God?

I've always been sort of a low tech kinda girl. In the past, when choosing a mobile phone, I just really wanted something I could make phone calls on, send text messages and take a picture or record video on. (Okay, I know that's not low tech to some people). So when my husband and I were in the market for new phones this past December, he was really excited that there were great deals on Smartphones. I was really hesitant to get on board with that idea, and I hoped to stick with something more basic. So I researched all my (surprisingly limited) options online, but ultimately, I chose to get an Android, all the while telling myself that if I didn't like it, I could return it and get something with fewer "bells and whistles".

Flash forward a couple months, and it turns out, I really kind of like it! (Okay, sometimes a little too much!)

Anyway, I recently came across this awesome app on my phone called You Version. It has the Bible in many different versions, as well as several other useful tools.

I had been struggling to stay in the Word for a number of reasons, and looking to find a Bible reading plan that I could realistically stick with. Well, one day I got curious, and started exploring this app, and noticed that there were Bible reading plans. Oh, my goodness! There are probably hundreds of different plans to choose from. Ranging from your basic "read through the Bible in a year" to chronological studies to week long plans for study on a particular topic.

I ended up going with one called Project 345 Plus. It includes readings from the New Testament, Psalms, Proverbs as well as selected readings from the Old Testament.

What I really, really love about this app? The "Catch Me Up" button! Usually, during the week, there are four selections to read, and when you complete all of them, it congratulates you on completing a day (who wouldn't love that?) But when you don't, there's the option to catch up, and when you tap the button, it basically updates your plan so that you don't skip the readings, but you also don't get "swamped" with missed readings. As a mom of two little ones, and one on the way, I really appreciate that!

So, how does that keep me connected to God? Not only can I pretty much do my study time any time, anywhere, but it also keeps me focused. I know that I can open the app any day, and have something specific to read. While I haven't gotten back in the habit of a daily study time, I'm closer than I would be otherwise.

Does reading the Word somewhat regularly or even everyday make me perfect? Absolutely not! But at least I have a better chance to "hide His Word in my heart" (Psalm 119:11) than I would otherwise.

Do you use any "gadgets" to keep you focused spiritually?