One fun sideline of my personal ministry is preparing digital libraries on electronic tablets for national church leaders who have a hard time getting printed resources. Part of that fun is trying to stay abreast of the new technology that is now available but the most fun is actually witnessing the increased productivity that occurs when leaders actually use the tablets to enhance their ministry.
|New tablet users from two countries in North Africa|
During this trip to North and West Africa, I’ve had some neat opportunities to witness some of that excitement first hand. In the first country we visited I was able to deliver three tablets and two mini LED projectors to a team that wants to use them in doing church-planting in some remote areas in the mountains. Because both tablet and projector can operate on battery power for up to two hours, it allows a complete showing of the Jesus Film in a house church meeting. In another country, I met with three men who had received their tablets several months ago and were able to give me a report on how well they were working. “These are such great tools,” they affirmed. “It is so fantastic to have all these resources together in this one small device.”
So what kind of practical resources are on those tablets? Here are some these units in North Africa were equipped with:
- Complete Bibles and Bible commentaries in both French and Arabic.
- A collection of Arabic discipleship lessons
- The “Bridges One” Scriptures In Use story-telling training
- Five lessons in French of City Team’s DMM (Disciple Making Movement) workshop
- A collection of videos in French and Arabic including the Jesus Film, More than Dreams and Magdalena (the Jesus Film for women.)
- Unfolding Word—fifty story picture-book Bible produced by Wycliffe Associates available in multiple languages and even some audio soundtracks
- Translation Studio—also from Wycliffe Associates, a free Android-based, self-contained Bible translation application that even features different keyboards for languages that don’t use Roman script
- PDF Maps with a complete digital atlas of Africa custom-designed by my friend, Marv Bowers of Information Learning Systems (ILS) that turns the tablet into a powerful research tool with GPS-encoded digital pushpins.
|Example of PDF Maps App showing GPS push-pin markers|
I’m particularly pleased with the latest model of electronic tablet supplied to these North African friends because it is one of the few I’ve found that not only has a slot for a 64 GB external SD card, but also has a mini HDMI port allowing a direct connection to a larger TV or projector. So, I’ve also pre-installed a PowerPoint application so that these friends can use them for training workshops. Now, whether in the mountains of the Maghreb or the sands of the Sahara, with just a tablet and a mini projector, these friends will have all they need to conduct complete evangelistic meetings or a discipleship training.
If you’re interested in helping to subsidize more of these tablets for future applications like these, please let me know. I have a special fund set up at One Challenge just for that.