Why every church should buy their missionary an iDevice

iPad, iPod, or iPhone – how can we use this technology for missions?

(Warning: shameless endorsement of Apple products)

1. iMessaging – physical letters are important, emails are essential, but iMessaging is texting without any cost. It is set up through your email address but allows you to send immediate texts and photos. This is helpful because you can send out a quick text with a prayer request, a personal note, or a short thought. Sure, you could send an email, or write a card. That would be good. But having the ability to text a missionary can be a great way to learn about their everyday life. (If you don’t use yours, start by going to Settings>Messages>iMessage. Turn it on and then under “Send and Receive” you can set up what email addresses can be recognized as iMessaging addresses.)

2. FaceTime– think Skype without cost and hassle. It just works. I would suggest you connect with your missionaries in this way in order to appreciate any exceptional facial hair attempts or maybe they can encourage you to hit the treadmill.

3. Ebooks – there are kindles, nooks, and I actually heard about a paper copy of a book. Those have their place and can be great, but you can read books right on your iDevice. Buy them a book you have really appreciated and it arrives immediately. Have a book study with them. Get something that they can use there. You can also use Logos on your device. Logos is the Bible study software to own.

4. Audiobooks – both free (www.christianaudio.com each month; librivox.org) and paid (www.audible.com). This is great for all the waiting missionaries have to do in various avenues of life.

5. Dropbox – a quick way to swap files without using a cd, flash drive, floppy disk, or clay tablet. It may also keep them from having a nervous breakdown when their computer crashes.

What would you add?