Monthly Archives: August 2013

Family time!

August has been a busy month, full of family!

We headed to Huntsville, AL, on July 29th to visit with my aunt, uncle, several cousins, their children, and other extended family. We loved getting to spend time with everyone! As is typical in my family, we played lots of games. My cousin Elijah had his Eagle Court of Honor while we were there, too. I am so proud of him! He is the 7th (and last) in his family to achieve that rank in Boy Scouts. One of the biggest highlights for us was getting to know Elena (2), Samuel (8 months), and Eisley (5 months), my cousins’ children. All three are MK’s, so it was our first time to meet Samuel and Eisley, and we hadn’t seen Elena in awhile.

The next generation!

The next generation!

August 9th – 13th, the kids and I joined my mom, two aunts, and grandparents at two family reunions in MI. It was a long (long, long!) drive, but it was fun! I hadn’t been to MI since I was about Nehemiah’s age, so it was long overdue.

My mom and the older 4 kids at our spur-of-the-moment visit to Lake Michigan

My mom and the older 4 kids at our spur-of-the-moment visit to Lake Michigan

We got back to Tupelo on August 13th, and hit the ground running to get things ready for Isaiah’s 5th birthday party on August 16th. I made sure we got lots of cousin pictures, especially since my nephew Aaron (who lives out-of-state) was able to join us! The 17th we were able to celebrate my niece Lily’s first birthday party, which was a huge blessing as well.

The Smith cousins - plus my sister-in-law, Jen, since my niece needed mama ;)

The Smith cousins – plus my sister-in-law, Jen, since my niece needed mama 😉

Isaiah with his rocket cake - FIVE!

Isaiah with his rocket cake – FIVE!

 

Isaiah and his best friend, Colbie. They are getting married when they grow up. Which is soon. Just ask Isaiah!

Isaiah and his best friend, Colbie. They are getting married when they grow up. Which is soon. Just ask Isaiah!

I’m so incredibly thankful for all the sweet family time that we crammed into the last few weeks. It is yet another reminder of God’s sovereignty and goodness. Our original training dates would have had us in NC for our cross-cultural training course during this time. While we are sad to be delayed for our departure to PNG, there is so much joy in the memories we were able to make with our family the last few weeks!

Digital Distribution

Information Technology in Missions: Digital Translations

Once the Bible is translated into someone’s language we generally think that the method of distribution is in a book format.  Maybe even with a soft leather, an index, and little tabs on the pages starting new books. This may actually not be the case. Have you considered how God could use digital translations of his Word?

Think for a moment. What device or devices, in the past 10 years, has changed many of our lives? Tablets, smart phones, maybe e-readers? All of these could effect how Bibles are distributed. Around the world these devices are becoming more prevalent. Even in countries that may not come to mind as having this type of technology. I mean think about it. When it comes to phones is it easier to setup a vast array of telephone lines, circuits, nodes, etc or to setup multiple cell towers with cell phones? Simple wireless is almost always easier than wired when it comes to infrastructure.

Wycliffe Bible Translators provides many different versions of God’s Word to YouVersion. You may have heard of it. It is a very popular app. It is a Bible app for your mobile device, tablet, or even in a web browser. It lets you view many different translations of God’s Word and even allows one to make notes, share Scripture, and highlight those verses that stand out to a person. A great application! If you have never used it then you are missing out.

By providing digital translations of God’s Word, people have much more ready access to it. To read. To share. To memorize. To apply to their lives. After all how often do you leave your phone behind? Currently as of this writing YouVersion has 600 Bible versions for 375 different languages 1, and that number has continued to grow!

However it does not end there. An alliance between several Bible translation organizations, Every Tribe Every Nation was founded with the purpose of collaborating and making available copies of digital translations. The founding members include, American Bible Society, Biblica, and Wycliffe Bible Translators. By working together these organizations can better supply digital copies of God’s Word in many different languages! Why is this important? I think they answer this best (my own emphasis):

Digital translations of the Bible can’t wait. Modern technology has expanded into nearly every corner of the globe. Our world is truly connected, networked together with cell phones, tablets, and digital devices. People everywhere have the means to receive and engage with Scripture—right in the palm of their hands. 2

So as you can see this can be a HUGE way to get God’s Word into people’s hands and help them to hide it away in their hearts.

How can we pray for digital translations?

  1. Pray God would continue to give managers, developers, designers, and layout professionals wisdom, understanding, and new ideas.
  2. Praise God for being able to use technology to spread his Word and the great response to using his Word in this way!
  3. Pray that God would provide resources to keep this effort before people.

Related Articles:


1) http://blog.youversion.com/2013/08/the-bible-app-around-the-world/
2) http://everytribeeverynation.org/resources/faq.php