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Nov 28, 2015

Hey Everyone!

I am back from Indonesia since Wednesday the 23rd. My trip started from Jakarta in the early morning of the 23rd. I saw the nightfall of the 24th flying west from Japan, but arrived home when it was still the 23rd in Arkansas. I am happy about the results of my time in Indonesia. Our little non-profit Bible translation organization there (called Albata) is now better organized, and we have clear goals and a budget for next year. We have ambitious goals for translating the Old Testament. Lord willing, we will add 3-4 people employed part-time as Bible translators— graduates of our on-line translation course. We also now have a team of people working to make audio recordings of the Plain Indonesian New Testament. Our two full-time members now have clear goals in leadership— taking over some things that I have normally done myself.

Albata doesn’t actually have the monthly income to accomplish the ambitious goals I just mentioned! Please pray that Indonesian Christians will find out about Albata and both pray for and support our Bible translation work. Please also pray for the two full-time members mentioned above (Daniel and Balazi). Pray for Balazi that he will have the Lord’s wisdom in leading Albata’s Bible translation team, and pray for Daniel in promoting the use of our Plain Indonesian New Testament even into rural areas of Indonesia. Incidentally, Daniel and Balazi are both engaged to be married.

I have almost finished updating the Digging Deeper Daily reading plan for the YouVersion Bible app. The main change is that the little introductory texts that I read in the podcasts will now be included inside the plan’s devotional content area. This will be way more convenient for about 500 YouVersion users who visit our website daily— not to listen, but just to read the episode notes. For you who are using the YouVersion app, I hope you will see the difference in the plan before January 1st.

There are some cool features in the YouVersion Bible reading app that I have only just begun to use. If you click on a verse, you have six very useful options— including highlighting verses and writing comments. Have you tried making a verse-picture yet?— which is the third of the six options. The pictures are easy to make and provide an eye-catching way to share meaningfully with your friends on social media. The backgrounds provided within the app are quite nice, and now you can also upload background images from your own device’s picture gallery. Then you set the size, color, and location of the verse text. The results are often so artistic that your friends will re-share your creations.

Please share your YouVersion verse-pictures with the Daily Bible Reading Podcast community! I have started a new Facebook group with this address: https://www.facebook.com/groups/DBRPdiggingdeeper/

Please visit that link (found in the episode notes) and click the “Join group” button on the right side of the title picture! Then when you mark a verse or make a verse-picture, after you share it in your normal fashion, please also click the share button again. Choose Facebook, and post to the DBRPdiggingdeeper group. Note that the default choice on the top line will be to share “On your own timeline.” Click the little triangular button next to the words “On your own Timeline,” and pick to share “To a group.” If you have already joined our group, you will find the choice to post to the DBRP group. It’s quick and easy to share!

There are 54 people who have already completed reading the 365-day Digging Deeper Daily plan! The plan started on YouVersion just before January 1st of 2015, so those 54 have finished it long before one year has elapsed. For all you who started later or have fallen a bit behind, keep going! I praise the Lord that over 1,000 people found— and have even completed, my 7-day Buckling the Belt of Truth plan which I announced in my last news podcast! That plan tells the seven Biblical teachings that have helped me most in living the Christian life.

I have committed myself to making another new set of podcasts covering the whole Bible in 2016. I will follow the same reading plan, but this time I will read from the Good News Bible. The translation notes and the closing prayers will be different. If you only just started listening to the DBRP sometime in late 2015, you may want to jump to the 2016 podcasts at some point. I hope that the recording quality will be consistently better in next year’s podcasts. Please pray with me that our Lord, Christ Jesus, will be glorified through the podcasts next year.

If you have been blessed by God’s Word through the Daily Bible Reading Podcasts— or if you have complaints or suggestions, please join our the new group on Facebook mentioned above and write a post. How has God been transforming you through His Word? Please share with us!

Albata’s web site (in Indonesian) is http://albata.info.