Local pastor discusses digital or print books

BY KYLE KINER

FUMC PASTOR

What do you choose, digital or print?  This is the world we live in now.  Do you read books that are printed?  Do you read books in digital format?  It is a way of life for many to read on their phone with a digital application.  But many people still use printed books.

As a pastor, I use both a printed Bible and a digital Bible.  If you see me preach on Sunday morning, I hold a printed Bible in my hand while also we have the words on the screen.  I prefer to read God’s Word by a printed book.  This helps me feel physically connected to God’s Word by touch and even smell.  I know that my printed Bible will not run out of power and have to be charged.

At the same time, I read the Bible everyday in digital format through the “Bible” app on my phone.  That digital version gives me a readable program to read while I walk on my treadmill and connect with God’s Word.  For the last two years, I have read the entire Bible through twice.  Reading digitally on my phone takes a different form of discipline and focus.  I have learned to train myself to focus on the words of God in a meaningful way.  I do get distracted.  The digital format forces me to tune into God’s Word in a way that I never thought possible.  However, God does speak to me through the screen form on my Bible.

So I choose digital and print.  I need both in different ways.  My library in my church office has over 1000 books that I have accumulated thru my pastoral education and continued learning.  I also have quite a few digital books that I access through my phone and tablet.  No, I don’t read all these books all the time.  I know they are there as resources whenever I need them.  I have taken time to catalog my library on a digital database that helps me know what books I have. 

I do enjoy getting my daily and weekly news by a printed newspaper.  I also stay informed with digital news reports.  I need both print and digital news.  By reading a printed newspaper I also feel connected to the story.  Digital news reports are quick to receive and give different aspects to the story. 

This is the “both/and” world we live in.  Both digital and print means help me to stay informed and growing as a pastor and a father and a citizen.  I believe that the future will not be free from printed materials.  Digital forms of information will continue to be widely available.  As Christians and as informed citizens, we will need to learn to appreciate all the forms of information we can access.  I am thankful to God that we have multiple tools to use.  May we not take for granted the times in which we live.  I hope this helps us all find our way with the digital and printed Word and words. 

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