Feb 14, 2012

Seek God for the City: Using Your iPhone or iPad as a Prayer Tool

Our church is using the Seek God for the City 2012 booklet as a guide to facilitate prayer for the church and for the world over a 40-day period ending on Palm Sunday. Your church may be doing the same. While most people may use the book, if you have an iPhone or an iPad, you can use the app that just came out as a more convenient guide for doing this.

I downloaded it and started looking at it tonight. Like the book, it leads you through a couple of Scripture-based prayers as well as guidance to pray specific things for the church, your city, the nation, and the world. However, unlike the book, the app has a number of extra useful tools:
  • When praying for the nations, it will link you to the Operation World information for each nation that you pray for. This is invaluable in being able to pray specifically for a country.
  • It has a great reminder system, one that other apps would do well to follow. It allows you to add a number of independent reminders to pray throughout the week but still makes it possible to add a reminder for every day at the same time without a lot of effort. You can have more than one reminder a day and the app will alert you when it's time to pray.
  • You can mark favorites and pray them later, even after the 40-day period is up.
  • Before or after the 40 days, you can pick a particular day's prayers or let it pick a day from random.
There is one feature it has that is counter-intuitive: sharing. Tapping the Share button pops up options to share by Facebook, email, and text message (but not Twitter currently). You would think that tapping the share button will share the information from the daily prayer but only shares information about the app. From their "Why no permission to copy" article that's included, it appears that they don't want sharing of daily prayers but the choice of a simple Share button, shown even in the context of a daily prayer page, makes it less-than-obvious what it is for.

Aside from the "sharing" usability issue, it appears to be a good app. If your church is doing Seek God for the City 2012 or you want to do it yourself, the app is a great alternative to the booklet.

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