One of my favorite posts from any writer is the list of apps they find helpful and use on a daily basis. I love finding helpful life hacks that make my day easier. Hopefully some of these resources I share will be of help to you!
1) DayOne Journaling App
I have used this literally almost every day for the past three years and it is fantastic and in my opinion the best online journaling application available. I made the mistake a number of years ago settling for a free version, and unfortunately I got what I paid for.
Okay, so it’s doubtful that kindle is a new concept to you, but if you are one of those “Must have a physical book in my hands to read” types I would seriously consider giving Kindle a whirl…especially if you are planning to do any writing. Every day when I read from the Kindle app, I am able to highlight text. When I am done reading a book, I take the list of quotes I have accumulated and incorporate them into the next app I will discuss.
Evernote is in my opinion the best app for organizing quotes and on the go material. It integrates well with web browsers so that you can easily store material you come across online. And it’s free for up to two devices.
Admittedly this is a newer app I have come across but one I am excited about it. For years I have used Microsoft Word and then Pages on my Mac. And while I find it great for basic writing functions, I have found it somewhat limited when working on larger projects such as a book or sermon series. Scrivener is fantastic because it is geared towards authors. Warning: There is a bit of a learning curve so it definitely isn’t the simplest option available.
5) Pro Writing Aid
Editors are expensive. And while I am certainly planning to use one, if not two, on the upcoming book project I am currently working on, Pro Writing Aid helps to smooth off some of the rough edges of my writing at a fairly affordable price. What’s cool is I can take a project I am working on in Scrivener, import it into Pro Writing aid, it corrects the mistakes I have, and then allows me to continue working on my project in Scrivener with the updated adjustments in place. [Note: There are some compatibility issues you may need to work through as the process is not as seamless as I would like.]
6) Accordance Bible Software
Again, this is an app I use virtually every day on my iPad and MacBook Pro. When I was studying in Bible College, the Bible Software Program I used to use was called Bible Works. Unfortunately, they always seemed to struggle being compatible with apple products and have since announced they are going out of business. Logos tends to be on the expensive side, although I take advantage of deals they might offer if they are cheaper than Accordance. For me Accordance does a decent job of creating a friendly user experience while allowing me to perform the functions I need it to do the most: Word searches and commentary research.
7) YouVersion Bible App
What I love about YouVersion is the quality. While often I tend to shy away from “Christian software programs” because they can tend to be buggy, YouVersion does a great job of “staying in their lane” and focusing on what they are good at. They are a great app for doing daily Bible reading plans. I use it almost every day. In the mornings, I copy a text of scripture that I am reading and paste it into another app that I use every day called Noteshelf.
Personally, I do so much writing between sermons, blog posts, and book projects, that I find it nice to switch things up by going back to the old fashioned method of pen and paper when I am doing my personal worship time with God. After pasting a portion of the scripture passage (usually 3-4 verses) I have read that day into the top of my daily worship journal (separate from my events journal in DayOne), I pull out my Apple Pencil and make highlights and marks on the passage I have read. Then, I write out a prayer to God based on that passage. Often, this prayer is based on the acronym PRAY: Praise, Release, Ask, and Yield. [Note: If DayOne were compatible with Apple Pencil, I would switch over in a second but currently they are not.]
Over a year ago now, I began realizing the amount of social media accounts I was managing was ridiculous. Between my personal accounts, The Monday Christian accounts, and those connected with Discovery Pointe, there were about ten different social media platforms I was working on. Buffer has since simplified this process big time. Now, when I take a picture of an event at our church, rather than uploading it to Twitter AND Facebook I just submit it to buffer and voila.
If you do not take advantage of all the great material available on podcasts, you’re missing out big time. Some of my favorites include: Brooklyn Tabernacle, Carey Nieuwhoff Leadership Podcast, Let My People Think by Ravi Zacharias, and OF COURSE The Monday Christian Podcast :).
Overdrive allows you to connect to public libraries in your area (assuming you have a library card) and gives you access to thousands of great books and audio books. Janan and I both use this regularly.
12) The Great Courses
I love learning about random things from smart people, but not necessarily paying top dollar to do so. The Great Courses app allows you to purchase university lectures on topics of interest for a very affordable rate. Currently, I am listening to one series on the art of writing good sentences. As you might could probably should be able to tell, I still need to continue listening! 🙂
Similar to The Great Courses but unique in that any average Joe can post material, Udemy allows you to take online classes from a whole range of different topics from cooking, baking, and website design. Currently, I am on a course on getting an MBA in business. (Baking might come further down the line :))
Sure, I had heard about WhatsApp from friends but had never used it frequently prior to a small group I started doing with a couple of guys in Toronto. Now that school is back in session, one of them lives in Poland, one in Chicago, and the others in Toronto. But together WhatsApp allows us to share in a group text the various Bible passages we are reading for the day.
15) Other Common Apps I Use
A few more common apps I use that I did not mention include Skype, Zoom, All Audio Record Studio, Apple Music, Keynote, Proclaim, Fitbit, Mailchimp, Map My Customers, Waze, Nest, and of course the NHL app!
Anyways, hope this is helpful and if you have an app that you would like to add, leave me a comment on our Facebook page!