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Posts tagged ‘Vine’

Appitude: The newest Twitter trend—sharing six-second videos on Vine—is surprisingly retro.

By Virginia Heffernan

If you believe a nubile new video app called Vine is sweeping the nation because Vine is a masterpiece or at least a better mousetrap, think again. Vine—which hit the web last week and lets you share looping, six-second videos on Twitter—is just fine, and plenty fun, but Vine is not suddenly everywhere on the Internet because it’s extra-special. It’s not even everywhere because someone used it to tweet porn early in the game, and Vine accidentally endorsed a xxx vid. No. Vine is everywhere because it belongs to Twitter.

In other words, she’s pretty cool and she’s the boss’s daughter. No wonder she’s the débutante of the season.

The Twitter story reverses the “Field of Dreams” vision of “if you build it, he will come.” Instead, with Twitter, we showed up—some 300 million Twitter users now—for what was initially a fairly thin set of text communications protocols. But we stayed on Twitter because other people did, and then they came because we were all there, learning in unison to compose epigrams with #hashtags and @replies and links.

Simultaneously, Twitter built itself in response to our presence, and our activities.  Having begun in 2006 as a place to circulate verbal chips and salsa, it didn’t become the so-called New Twitter until 2010, when it started letting users see photos and videos without leaving Twitter.

For years, third-party developers turned out Twitter add-ons like Tweetdeck and Twistori . But now Twitter has decided to take charge of developing its own Internet real estate. This is like the oil companies getting friendly with the railroads in the 19th century. Ultimately, people in oil and gas like to be in real estate, too. Similarly, people in social networking get into app development. Synergies are discovered; profits are made; markets are happy, then not; oligopolies are busted up. And repeat. It’s the American way.

So what is Vine, besides Twitter’s first foray into owning not just the rails but the stuff that rides the rails? In short, Vine is a way to rediscover, and pleasingly exploit, the magic of animation. (If you’re not on Twitter or Vine, here’s a good place to watch some Vine videos.)

I’ve made a few Vine videos, or “Vines” (I guess they’re called?), and I enjoyed it. Remember the time you and your brother hauled out your dad’s brandless movie camera, set up Chewbacca and Princess Leia, and prepared thumb and forefinger for a brutal 40-hour marathon of “stop-action animation”? It’s like that. Neato.

I mean, I realize that childhoods are different, and a few did not take place in the 1970s, in the Dawn of Industrial Light and Magic. But, whether you were born in 1940 or 1990, there’s gotta be a moment when someone showed you how animation works, with a flipbook or maybe a Muybridge zoopraxiscope, if you happen to be 100.

Let that dawning dawn again. To make a Vine video, you open the app on your phone/movie camera and hold a button down. When you let go, the camera stops rolling. You can then point it elsewhere, or move around what you’re shooting, and start it up again. In this way, you can do rad jumpcuts or just start-and-stop-and-move-and-start-again with the wonderful, tedious patience of a claymation animator.

I went for jumpcuts first, and enjoyed catching a panorama with significant missing parts. My video looked hectic and urban and even disturbing with all its motion and gaps, especially when I shot from inside a Manhattan taxi. I then started to try animation, and started to make a glass of water that looked like it was magically emptying. But I was too lazy even to return the glass to the right spot. So it just looked like a glass jumping around on a table. You couldn’t even really tell that the water level was going down.

Vine videos play on an endless loop so they have a kind of glitchy, broken-record look that is maybe retro. I’m not sure I like it, especially after one by Tyra Banks, lost under a bunch of Chrome windows on my desktop, wouldn’t stop repeating its goofy dialogue.

But I do like the wicked-easy sharing and the intuitive controls. I also like the curation: there’s a lot of Exploring and Discovering and Editor’s Picks. For a week-old app, Vine—boosted by Twitter’s marketing and integrating—already seems flush with users and content. Every new Vine video attracts comments, and you’d think users were commenting on some century-old craft, like needlework, as they get into the nitty-gritty of “how did you do that?!”

Everybody just saw this app a few days ago, guys. We’re all just figuring it out. Some, I guess, are figuring faster than others. The height of achievement on Vine—aside from the promotion of Vine itself, which is Vine’s actual proudest achievement—is a Lego fantasia, as of this writing. Someone named Hunter Harrison put Lego Batman and Lego Robin on a gray Lego surface and had the caped crusaders scope out and destroy their enemies.

“How did you do this without your hand getting in the way?” one commenter, awestruck, asked. Ah. The magic of stop-motion. It never gets old, even when everything else is new.


The road ahead…

“Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.”
-John 15:4-7

Other than checking my calendar, I have no idea what this week will contain. However, the Lord has already planned certain events that, when taken as opportunities, will produce blessings. I would love to see his plan so that I might avoid missing any of it. I’d feel more prepared if God could, somehow, give me some hints as to what is on the road ahead.

Wait! There is a way! I can spend more quality time with him today and every day. By spending time with the Lord, I will be able to hear him as he reveals to me what is about to happen or just happened.

By being in his word, praying with him often throughout the day, I will be thoroughly ready and equipped for the days ahead, no matter what comes my way.

I need to be aware that he is constantly at my side so I won’t miss a thing.

Aware of him beside me, then he can get my attention. With His presence as my companion, I can be more aware, moment by moment, of whatever is to come.

I need to stay in continual communication with the Lord so he can also direct my thoughts.

My recognition and acceptance of his presence is my best plan for the day, the week, and the years ahead so as not to miss any opportunities or blessings.

The Lord has told us in his word, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest” (Exodus 33:14).

Prayer: Lord, prepare me for each moment that is before me. I know you have many meetings and opportunities for me. May I become aware of them and take those opportunities to be there for you. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Devotion: How does the Lord prepare you for each day?.

By Fred Gillett, Crystal Cathedral Pastor.

We Are Required to Bear Fruit.

I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. —John 15:1-2

It is necessary to remember that as God‘s field, the true vine, we have the responsibility to be obedient. For if there is no obedience, there will be no fruit to grow on that field. We are told in John 15:8 what the gardener wants: “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit.” What is required is abiding or remaining in Christ.

Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. —John 15:4

We cannot do things our way and still abide or remain in Him. Abiding in Him means obedience. So you can see why the mystery of God’s sovereignty is not limited to His saving work. He alone makes things happen in the work of sanctification, but without my obedience there will be no sanctification. It is, as I say, a mystery.

The second aspect of the believer’s responsibility is observation of what we are within ourselves. The crops in a field are observable, are they not? What is required, therefore, is that I examine myself. Is there fruit?

If I examine myself, it means I must have objectivity about myself. It is as though I stand back and look at myself; I observe myself. And if I see something that is not right, I deal with it.

Paul calls this “judging” ourselves. He says, “But if we judged ourselves, we would not come under judgment” (1 Cor. 11:31). If by the Word of God or by external chastening I judge myself, I will not have further chastening.

Yet Paul does say that when we are judged, it is chastening: “When we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned with the world” (v. 32). Even when God steps in like that, it proves the person is a Christian.

Excerpted from When God Says “Well Done!” (Christian Focus Publications Ltd., 1993).


Abide In Me.


Remain in me, and I in you. As the branch can’t bear fruit by itself, unless it remains in the vine, so neither can you, unless you remain in me. – John 15:4


As a truth in nature the meaning of this is very plain. A branch torn off a vine or a tree, and lying on the ground, will not bear fruit. Indeed, it cannot even live, but soon withers. The analogy holds in spiritual life.

It would be just as unnatural to expect the professing Christian who has given up praying and has ceased to read his Bible, and withdrawn from loving and trusting Christ, to be really a fruitful Christian.

The branch has no life but what flows into it from the vine or the tree; the Christian has no spiritual life but what comes from Christ’s life, though faith and prayer and the Holy Word.

We live as Christians only when Christ lives in us. Said St. Paul“I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”

All spiritual beauty in us must be the life of Christ reproduced in us, just as the foliage and the fruit in a tree are produced by the tree’s life flowing into the branches.

A mere Christian profession will not therefore yield the fruits of a true Christian life. One might take a branch that had been torn off and with cords tie it on a green tree, but that would not make it a fruitful branch.

It would draw no life from the tree, and would soon be withered and utterly dead. One may be tied to Christ by the cords of profession, but if there is no real vital attachment of the life to Christ by faith and love, Christ’s life cannot flow into it, and it is only a dead, withered branch.

We must be truly in Christ and have Christ in us, or there can be no life in us and no fruitfulness.

We must also abide in Christ, maintaining our communion and fellowship with Him year after year, or we cannot be fruit-bearing Christians.

By Vine.

Bible In A Year: October 30th…

By Book Old Testament New Testament Proverbs & Psalms
Luke 19-21 Lamentations 3:40-5:22 Hebrews 1 Psalm 119:129-136

The True Vine.

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the farmer. – John 15:1

This is a wonderful Vine. It grew up at first like “a root out of a dry ground, with no form nor comeliness.” the soil in which it was planted seemed to poor to produce anything good.

But its origin was heavenly, and it grew into luxuriant beauty. By-and-by it seemed that men in their rage had altogether destroyed this Vine, which had in it so much blessing for the earth; however, it was not destroyed, but was only lifted away from earth and transplanted to heaven.

There in the garden of God its roots were fixed, and the Vine itself dropped down to earth again, and began to send out branches in all directions. Every poor little human life which attaches itself to this Vine is grafted on it and becomes a branch in it, drawing life from the Vine’s fullness, and sharing its fruitfulness.

These branches are not left to grow wild and untended, but have wise and skilful care. It ought to be a great comfort to us to know that as branches we are under the culture of a husbandman who is none other than our heavenly Father“Your Father is the husbandman.” We are very sure that His care will be both wise and tender. If an ignorant, inexperienced, unskillful man were to enter a beautiful vineyard and begin cutting away at the vines, he would soon destroy them. He does not know what he ought to prune off, or what he ought to leave on the vine.

But if the man who comes to tend the vineyard understands vines, and has had long experience and is skilful, there is no danger that he will do harm in his pruning. Sometimes, indeed, He may seem to be cutting the vine to death; but we know that He understands what He is doing, and that all His prunings are for the good of the branches. By-and-by we shall see increased fruitfulness as the result of His unsparing work.

By Vine.

Bible In A Year: October 28th…

By Book Old Testament New Testament Proverbs & Psalms
Luke 13-15 Lamentations 1-2-6 Titus 3 Psalm 119:113-120

My Neighbour.

But a certain Samaritan, as he traveled, came where he was. When he saw him, he was moved with compassion, came to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. He set him on his own animal, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. – Luke 10:33-34

Don’t think that the half-heathen Samaritans were better as a class than the highly-favored Jews. Jesus used a Samaritan in His parable because He wants to impress the law of love. No matter who the victim is that we come across in our day-to-day activities, he is our neighbor. He may be a very worthless sort of person, but no matter, he is our neighbor.

As we look closely at him, we may see that he is an enemy. Once he did us some wrong, and deserves no claim for our sympathy or help, but none the less, he is still our neighbor. The person we find suffering or in need of any kind becomes our neighbor — the one neighbor to whom for the time-being we owe our love.

There is more definition here: we learn what the word “love” means. You say, “I can’t love hateful people; I can’t love criminals; I can’t love a poor homeless person.”Nobody expects you to love such people as you love your wife, your child, or your friend. It is not likely that this Samaritan had a tender concern for this wounded Jew while he was helping him.

Samaritans were not in the habit of loving Jews very deeply. But he did not look at the man and calculate whether he loved him or not before he began to attend to his wounds. Yet he loved him precisely as the commandment meant he should love him. His love was not a warm emotion — it was a very practical affection.

First it was pity: he had compassion on him. But pity is sometimes a very useless emotion — merely a tear that comes easily, and costs nothing. This good traveler had more than a tear. His pity got into his hands and into his pocket. He went to the man and dressed his wounds and helped him to a safe place, and gave attention to him until he healed.

Please consider making a donation to CoAid ( — a charity The Vine supports to help those in distress. Thank you.

By Vine.

Bible In A Year: September 3rd…

By Book Old Testament New Testament Proverbs & Psalms
Ezekiel 13-15 Isaiah 3-5-7 2 Corinthians 6:3-7:1 Psalm 105:12-22

Passing By.

By chance a certain priest was going down that way. When he saw him, he passed by on the other side. – Luke 10:31

Let’s not think that all priests were cold and heartless like this man. Ministers are generally warm-hearted people and they should all be like this — setting a good example of kindness and sympathy just as Christ did, who was always ready to help anybody in trouble.

No doubt many of the Jewish priests were kind and generous; but here was one who was not. This shows us that being a priest or a minister does not make any one tender-hearted; one may occupy a very sacred place, and still have a cold and hard heart. When we see people like this it is indeed a sad thing!

This priest did not even stop to look at the wounded man, or to ask him how be came to be injured, or to find out what he could do for him. He kept as far to the other side of the road as he could get; perhaps he even pretended not to see the man lying on the ground. No doubt he had excuses ready in his own mind. He was in a great hurry, or he was very tired, or he could not do anything for the poor man if he should stop, or he perhaps hated the sight of blood!

No matter what his motives were, it is important that we do all we can to avoid repeating his mistake. Are there people in distress we know we should help but instead choose to ignore? Are we selective about which people to help? Do we try and rationalize our behavior by dreaming up excuses instead of actually helping people?

Some people look the other way when they are passing a person in need. Ministers have refused to go to see sick people because they are tired of dealing with people. People have stayed away from church because they knew there would be an appeal for money to help a needy cause. This verse is an ugly mirror, isn’t it? It shows us blemishes that we didn’t know we had.

Please consider making a donation to CoAid ( — a charity The Vine supports to help those in distress. Thank you.

By Vine.

Bible In A Year: September 2nd…

By Book Old Testament New Testament Proverbs & Psalms
Ezekiel 10-12 Isaiah 1-2 2 Corinthians 5:11-6:2 Psalm 105:1-11

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