Archive for year 2013
As our thanks to so many great users of The Bible Study App around the globe we’re discounting our popular Olive Tree Bible Maps this week only.
You can grab this great addition to your library for only $0.99! Go here to add it to your account or look for it in the In-App store.
We recently crossed an exciting milestone…
One of the benefits of The Bible Study App is that you can install it on different devices and those devices have the ability to sync with each other. With the sync feature you can take a note or make a highlight and it will then be available on any device that has the Bible Study App. Not only do all of your notes, highlights, bookmarks, and tags sync across devices – but so do reading plans. Start one reading plan on your phone and read the next entry on your tablet or computer.
So about that milestone.
Our sync server recently crossed the 100 Million mark! That number represents thousands of people from all over the world who are actively reading and studying God’s word. For all of us at Olive Tree Bible Software this is a great reminder about why we love what we do.
If you haven’t yet taken advantage of the free sync service for your Bible Study App signup for a free account HERE to get started.
To celebrate this milestone we’ve also discounted some of the top items that are marked with notes, highlights, tags, and more. Go HERE To see them!
Seven years and three kids into being a parent I’ve still got a lot of things to figure out. Some parenting lessons are fun to learn and some – if I’m honest – are a bit scary. Early on in our marriage my wife and I talked about the various traditions of our upbringing – and what elements we’d like to combine or new ones we’d like to create as our family grew. Inevitably most of the traditions that we reflected on had to do with holiday celebrations.
In American culture the Christmas season is the longest holiday season and as a result also the most packed with various traditions. So as our firstborn arrived we began to talk about things like Advent, how we should approach Santa Claus, and what to do on Christmas Eve. As we talked, we found ourselves sifting through three significant areas as it relates to celebrating Christmas.
- How our culture celebrates it
- How our families celebrate it
- How our faith celebrates it
As you can imagine there are quite a few points of intersection in all three of these areas but there are also some pretty significant disconnects.
As a whole our culture (the United States) continues to move father and farther away from remembering Jesus birth and deeper and deeper into the consumer and commercialization of the Christmas season. Many Christians families struggle with being overwhelmed by the culture while still trying to maintain some semblance of faith.
I can remember one of the first years of celebrating Christmas with our firstborn. Literally dozens of relatives had given our son presents for Christmas. Before we had begun to open the stack of presents under the tree he pulled out a small car from his stocking – and we could have stopped right there. The intense joy and satisfaction on his face from receiving that new car and his immediate energy in driving it around the house said it all. After a few minutes though we actually interrupted his play to get him busy opening his mountain of presents. This ended up becoming a key event in how we would approach future Christmas celebrations.
My wife and I had some questions to ask.
- In a culture that is doing everything it can to ignore Jesus, how do we make him the center of Christmas?
- How can we use the very prominent aspect of gift giving as a selfless part of Christmas – not a selfish one?
- Is it OK to allow fun, silly, and maybe even allow non-religious aspects of the Christmas season be a part of our celebration?
As our family continues to grow and our kids get older, my wife and I have realized that it’s up to us to be intentional in how we aim the focus of this season. We have the immense privilege and responsibility to put the focus where it should be. And so as a family we have intentional conversations, we read stories, we promote generosity, we correct selfishness, and above all we remember Jesus.
Do we fail in our focus? You bet. Just because we’re adults doesn’t mean we’re not influenced by the culture. Our hope though is that someday when our children are starting families of their own, that their memories of the Christmas season will be packed full of Jesus, relationships, and generosity.
How about you? In what ways do you strive to make the reality of Christ’s incarnation a focus of the Christmas season?
Please share in the comments section below.
By Todd Shaffer, Creative Director of Glorious Films and The Promise: Birth of the Messiah, the Animated Musical
Olive Tree has long been my digital Bible of choice. It’s simple to use, beautiful to look at, and provides a depth of research that rivals any other digital resource available. Being a writer and director I’m always on the go, squeezing in research wherever I can, using many different devices and platforms: PC, Android, iOS and Kindle. Olive Tree has all my devices covered, and on each device all of my resources are available, including notes and highlights which sync across all devices.
While writing the lyrics to the songs of my next film, ‘The Prodigal’, I’m delving heavily into the Old Testament to find metaphors, images and spiritual concepts that follow the spiritual journey of the younger son as he illustrates the crisis and redemption themes of the Jewish nation. Olive Tree allows me to search certain expressions and words, and from there the cross references and footnotes broaden the scope of my search to passages that were not on my radar. I’ve not found any need to jump to another Bible study tool. It’s all here in Olive Tree.
One thing I love the most about Olive Tree is that it is beautiful. The fonts, type-spacing and color schemes invite you to dwell on the text, and this is one of the most overlooked tests of any Bible Reader. I study slowly, and I spend a lot of time reading and rereading the same passage, reflecting on the text and it’s context. Most readers are utilitarian in style and design, but Olive Tree has put a premium on aesthetics, and as an artist and lover of God’s Word, this is something I value. In the battle of the digital Bible study tools, Olive Tree delivers a 5 star performance.
Watch the trailer of The Promise HERE!
Find out more about Glorious Films.