Top 5 Photography Apps

One of my favorite hobbies is photography, specifically landscape photography. I have a nice camera, a Pentax K20, that I use most of the time. But occasionally, I see an opportunity for a shot and I don’t have my camera handy.

Photography Apps

Fortunately, the cameras on most mobile devices have become quite good. And with several key apps, I can capture a shot with my phone that is almost as good as one shot with my camera.

Due to the overwhelmingly large amount of quality apps out there, this list contains more than my top five apps. There are several that I use frequently. And, even though some overlap somewhat, each one is a quality app that does things that other apps just don’t do as well.

Each of these are used primarily on my iPhone 5s, but the bonus app at the end of the list is on my iPad.

Book Review – The Confession by Robert Whitlow

The Confession by Robert WhitlowOver the weekend, I read Robert Whitlow’s newest book, The Confession. Overall, I enjoyed the book. In the genre of legal thrillers, it isn’t the best I’ve read, but it wasn’t bad.

The story line begins with Holt Douglas and a friend leaving a party drunk. An accident occurs, leaving the friend dead, and Holt responsible. Fast forward ten years, and Holt Douglas is an assistant country prosecutor with a great job, a steady girlfriend, and an established place in life. His goal is to fulfill the dreams of his dead friend.

But never, not once, in the past ten years, has he shared the secret he carries concerning the truth of that night.

Things begin to heat up in town as Holt stumbles across a cold case murder file that seems to have been covered up. Who was involved and just how deeply does it all go? Holt is determined to find out.

Throw in a female deputy sheriff who is attracted to Holt, causing problems with his girlfriend, a looming political campaign his boss needs to win, and the spiritual weight of the burden he carries, and it isn’t long before his life begins to spiral out of control.

As he struggles to come to terms with all that is going on, Holt discovers that God is actively seeking him. With numerous people praying for him, and his connection with a nearby minister, Holt begins to see just what God can do in his life.

Coffee Break – 08.18.2014

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Honeybees Love Coffee, Too – What do honeybees and humans have in common? We both love our caffeine. This is a pretty fascinating infographic detailing the similarities between humans and bees, and the importance of coffee to both.

Cities Shrouded In Fog – One of the most beautiful elements of nature, in my opinion, is fog. I love the way it flows around everything in its path, whether it be trees or buildings. These images of cities coated in fog are simply stunning.

Extremely Detailed Paper Birds – I am continually amazed at the level of creativity that people possess. This artist creates birds from paper that look real.

How To Be Be More Grateful – Here are five simple things that each of us can do to be more grateful on a daily basis.

Memorize Scripture: 2 Timothy 4:11-13

In the previous verses, Paul listed three people, two in a positive light, but one that is not so positive. In this week’s passage, Paul lists a few more people, and requests that Timothy bring him a couple of items.

Look at his remarks in 2 Timothy 4:11-13:

2 Timothy 4:11-13

In the previous verses, Paul listed Titus and Crescens as helpful colleagues in his work. Each of these had gone on to other places, serving and ministering, leaving Paul feeling quite alone. However, he isn’t completely on his own. He still has at least one person with him, and the expectation of more to come.

Paul senses that his time serving Christ on earth is coming to a close. But this does not stop him from continuing his ministry. This is notable. Even though his death is near, he still sees opportunity to serve his Lord, and does so. Much of this takes the form of passing on vital instructions to those who will continue to carry the torch. But I’m sure, knowing what we know of Paul from his writings, he still preached and shared the message of the gospel to all those around him, including his captors.

After all, “to live is Christ” (Philippians 1:21). Death would usher him into the presence of God, but until then, there was work to be done.

Christ has no body on earth but yours, no hands but yours, no feet but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ’s compassion for the world is to look out; yours are the feet with which He is to go about doing good; and yours are the hands with which He is to bless us now.

Saint Teresa of Avila

Book Review – 1 Samuel For You by Tim Chester

1 Samuel For You by Tim ChesterI have been extremely impressed with the God’s Word For You series from The Good Book Company. Not necessarily categorized as commentaries, these books still do a pretty good job of taking the reader through a book of the Bible, passage by passage, and examining it in detail.

The added benefit of this series is that there are some excellent personal application aspects, in the form of challenges as well as a few questions at the end of each chapter. This makes these books extremely practical.

So far, I’ve read several books in this series, including the ones covering Judges, Romans 1-7, Galatians and Titus. The newest installment is 1 Samuel. Each of these are practical and helpful, and are incredible resources for personal growth or for teaching. 1 Samuel For You is no different.

Much of the time, we tend to read the Old Testament as history, with little thought of the future it points toward. Much of the time, we read books like 1 Samuel, seeing only the events of the time, of Samuel’s life, of the nation of Israel from that period, and we leave it at that.

But Tim Chester does a great job of drawing out not only the historicity of the book, but he helps us see Christ in these events. And once he directs us toward Christ, he helps us draw current and relevant applications for our own lives in the twenty-first century.

In the past, I’ve read the chapters of 1 Samuel and have studied the events contained in them. But Chester takes things a bit further than I’ve ever thought to. He views most of the rest of the book through the lens of Samuel’s birth and Hannah’s song, found in the first couple of chapters. From these, especially Hannah’s prayer, he sees a shadow and and outline of the rest of the book, and even of Israel’s immediate future.

Coffee Break – 08.11.2014

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7 Taboos From A 17th Century Coffeehouse – I found this amusing. I frequent many fine coffee establishments in the area (this doesn’t include a certain mermaid-logo-bearing coffee giant. Friends don’t let friends drink there…). Most of them wouldn’t exist if the items in this list were taboo today, because there is much of this in each of those places. It seems like there are more Bible studies in some of these places than in churches.

You’re Doing Twitter Wrong – These two guys have a series of humorous videos that poke fun at our normal, everyday lives. In this one, they look at how people do Twitter, right or wrong. Pretty funny.

70 Years Long Traffic Jam Discovered In Belgian Forest – There may be some discrepancy on the length of time these cars have been here. Many of them may be newer than the title claims them to be. Regardless, the eerie, abandoned gridlock conveys a sense of time, loneliness and creativity. I’d love to see this in person.