**All the apps in this post are free (or have free versions that we use and love).
I’m kind of a paper-pencil type of girl.
I have a paper planner, that I love, and getting a hand-written letter is one of my very favorite things.
But we live in a digital age, and we can’t really ignore technology. For parents who are trying to raise their children to follow Christ, a lot of the ways that technology is being used today can be really scary. Social media, violent video games, and even pornography are more accessible to our children than they ever have been before, and we have to be so careful as we navigate through each new app update and technological advance. (And if you need help in this area, I love the resources available at BecauseFamily.)
But sometimes, we can levereage that technology to help us cultivate strong, Christian families. Here are five of our family’s favorite apps for building a culture of faith in our home.
If you’re not already using this (and I imagine many of you are) this is a fantastic, easy-to-use Bible app. Using You Version, you can read the full text of the Bible in many different versions, right on your phone. I also especially love the audio feature. If you’re not a big reader, or on mornings when you want to read the Bible, but can’t seem to get your sleepy eyes to focus on the words on the page, listening to someone else read the Bible to you is a great alternative.
Another great Bible app option is Blue Letter Bible. I recently downloaded it, and haven’t played around with the features much, but it appears to have some great study tools. (If you’re using it, tell us about it in the comments!)
This is a Bible memorization app. There is a paid version, but so far the free version is working well for me, and if we ever decide to upgrade, the paid version allows you to share across multiple devices, so our entire family could use it together.
This takes a while to get the hang of, but the basic idea is that you pick a verse, and to work on memorizing it, you just type the first letter of each word. You have some chances to type it out with all the words on the screen, and then ever other before you try typing it from memory.
My favorite feature is that the app has a built-in review schedule for all the verses you’ve learned. Sometimes I’ll do a really good job of learning a verse, but with no review, six months later, I’ve forgotten it. This app is helping me keep those verses I’ve learned hidden in my heart permanently.
This is an app my husband has started using on his morning commute and he loves it. You can add requests to your prayer list, set a time for how long you’d like to pray for each thing, and the app will go through your list, and tell you when to start praying for something else.
If you want to be more consistent in your prayer life, or need help staying on track while you’re praying, I think you’ll really enjoy this app.
B&H Altered Reality
This is a big app, but if you have any of the B&H Kids Bibles (we have this one and this one), it can be a fun supplement. With the Big Picture Bible Storybook, for example, on most stories, the app will make the illustration seem to pop off the page, and give a brief overview of the story. Then, for a few stories, there’s a QR code, and when you scan it, it takes you to a video retelling of the Bible story.
It’s a little silly sometimes, but my kids like it, and when they’re excited and engaged during our Bible story time before bed, I think that’s a win.
So this isn’t strictly a faith-based app, but it helps us keep up our regular family routines wherever we are. I have the Kindle version of The Jesus Storybook Bible (one of our favorites) downloaded to my phone. When we’re traveling, I know that I can always read a Bible story to my kiddos before bed, just like we do at home, and I don’t have to remember to pack anything extra.
I’m always surprised at how much that one thing helps us feel a little more normal, no matter how crazy life is on a trip or during a transition. If you always bring a Bible or storybook with you when you travel, try getting an ebook version for your next trip to lighten your luggage!
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