"Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers." - VoltairE

6 of the best daily prayer apps

August 3, 2019
I have recently been helped in the discipline of daily prayer by a number of apps, so I wanted to share 6 of the best free ones. The selection represents a number of different Christian faith traditions, so I hope that there is something for everyone.



(1) Pray As You Go (Free)


This is my favourite daily prayer app. Each day there is an audio reflection of about 12 minutes which includes music, Scripture reading, questions for reflection and quiet time for you to pray. It’s British, so has familiar accents! You can download prayers for offline use and there are also longer series and themed prayers. The app is free, but there’s an opportunity to donate on the website if you find it useful.



This is essentially the Book of Common Prayer in app form and can be used as an individual or with groups. There is a pattern of liturgy for morning, evening and night prayer, including Scriptures and hymns. Online access is free and you can opt to pay £2.99 a year to download the prayers.



This is another daily liturgy for morning, midday and evening, this time coming from the non-denomination Red Letter Christians movement. There are prayers, songs, reflections and Scripture readings. One of the nice features is an inbuilt songbook so that you can sing along to hymns such as ‘Great is thy faithfulness’ and ‘Be thou my vision’. There is also a monthly action with suggested responses and reading. (This month it is ‘Peacemaking’)

 

This is much more than just a prayer app, as it also features news, blogs, campaigns and a lot more. It has a daily Bible reading with notes and questions to ponder and the daily prayer includes one ancient and one modern prayer.

(5) Pray the Gospels (Free)


This is a guided lectio divina app to help you immerse yourself in the gospels. It encourages careful, Spirit-filled Scripture reading, prompts reflection and meditation on God’s word, and encourages prayerful response and action.

(6) Centering Prayer (Free)


This is less about content and more of a prayer timer to help you spend quiet time with God. You can customise your time with an opening and closing prayer and a beginning and ending sound. You can decide how long you want to spend in silence from 1 min to 99 mins.


 

Picture this thought - Candle [Simplicity]

June 29, 2019
A short reflection on simplicity in our materialistic and consumeristic culture. How can we focus on what really matters instead of ploughing our energy into working for things which won't last?

Jesus said "Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions." (Luke 12: 15) and "Go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." (Matt 19: 21)



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A few faith-based funnies

June 13, 2019


A minister decided to visit his church members one Saturday. At one particular house it was clear that someone was home, but nobody came to the door. The minister knocked several times and finally took out his card and wrote on the back: 

Revelation 3:20 - "Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and dine with him and he with me." 

The next day the same card showed up in the collection plate. Below the minister’s message was another s...

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9 inspirational women from the New Testament

June 6, 2019
I love the fact that the New Testament records a range of women of different ages and backgrounds using their skills and gifts for God's Kingdom. We see rich and poor, educated and uneducated, single and married, leaders, charity workers, intellectuals, risk-takers, business women and craftswomen all being used by God in powerful ways. It truly is astonishing when you think about the cultural context of the New Testament - in the Jewish world, Greek culture and the Roman empire - that women h...
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Picture This Thought - Metro train [Busyness]

June 6, 2019
A 3-min reflection on the fast pace of modern life, our idolatry of productivity and where our sense of worth comes from. 



You can read more in my post Life in the Fast Lane.
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Picture This Thought - All sorts [The body of Christ]

June 4, 2019
A 3-minute reflection on the community of the church as the Body of Christ, valuing everyone and loving our enemies.

You may also enjoy my blog post - The Strange Little Band of the Gospel.

For more about the politics of enemy love, I recommend 'Sympathy For Jonah' by David Benjamin Blower.



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9 Christian women you should know

May 17, 2019
  1. Susan B. Anthony (1820 - 1906)
    Born into a Quaker family with a long history of anti-slave activism, Susan B. Anthony developed an early sense of fairness and justice. She dedicated her life to women’s suffrage after joining the women’s rights movements in 1852. She campaigned for the abolition of slavery, the right for women to own their own property, to keep their earnings, as well as their right to attend higher learning institutions.


  2. Sojourner Truth (Unknown - 1883)
    She was born a sla...

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Picture This Thought - Meal [Food]

April 17, 2019
We live in a world of fast food, drive throughs, TV dinners, working lunches and meals in a shake. But what if eating is meant to be a much more spiritual experience?

In this short reflection, I consider the importance of mealtimes in the early church, in Jewish history and in our own lives as we build community. We can learn some profound truths about God through our relationship with food if we're willing to stop and think.


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5 ways the prophecy of Joel challenges today’s church

April 3, 2019


Joel as a missional book


I recently wrote an assignment for my Master’s which involved a missional reading of the book of Joel. I could pick any passage of Scripture I liked and there were several times I regretted choosing Joel, but I’m glad I stuck with it as it’s an oft-neglected book of the Bible which has an important message for the church today. When I started, all I knew about it was that it involved a lot of locusts!

As it turns out, Joel’s prophecy demonstrates the whole redem...

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11 more of my favourite podcasts

March 8, 2019


Welcome to the latest post in my occasional podcast recommendation series.

You can catch up on my previous recommendations here:
I've got a mixed topic bag of 11 of my current favourites. See what you think and let me know in the comments below if there are any you'd add:

Topic: Christian Q and A
Frequency: Fortnightly
Running time: 30 mins (usually)
New Testament theologian and prol...

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