I really like the Maps application on my ipad because it makes it possible for me to zoom in and zoom out on the world. I can look at the world in so many views. I can see satellite images, or I can have street names superimposed on those images, and I can see terrain and buildings. It is almost like going somewhere and getting a bird’s eye view. When I read about different places, I like to go to my Maps application and discover those places so that they can become more real to me. As I've been reading Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, I've looked up some of the places to understand the geography better. (I wish it had the capability of telling me what the scale is of what I am seeing. I also wish I could know longitude and latitude.) Nevertheless, this application is amazing to me. Occasionally when the urge hits, I "wander around" North, South, and Central America, looking for anything that might fit vaguely with Book of Mormon geography. Zooming in and zooming out in satellite view, I feel like I can get a sense of what it must be like for God to see the big picture of what is going on globally and also know on the very small scale of what is going on with each person. (Granted, it is a very limited sense, but still, it teaches me about how vast His vision is, and yet how much He cares for 'the one.') I remember back in 2000 or 2001 when supercomputers were donated to BYU that could render these images so you could zoom in and zoom out on earth smoothly as if you were in a rocket rising or an asteroid falling. The ipad doesn’t zoom in or out quite as smoothly, but it does allow the same kind of global or magnified view.

As I was thinking about this recently, some scriptures came to my mind.
Now Ammon said unto him: I can assuredly tell thee, O king, of a man that can translate the records; for he has wherewith that he can look, and translate all records that are of ancient date; and it is a gift from God. And the things are called interpreters, and no man can look in them except he be commanded, lest he should look for that he ought not and he should perish. And whosoever is commanded to look in them, the same is called seer. (Mosiah 8:13, emphasis added)
Computers are starting to remind me of Urim and Thummims these days. They can show us so many things, we just have to be aware that there are some things we should not look for. I’m finding that I get the best use my ipad and my computer when I have a specific purpose to sit down and use them. I suppose this great technology is a gift and also a test to see if we will look for the things God commands us to look for or whether we will look for things we ought not that will spiritually kill us. In a certain sense, it is preparation for this glorious future:
9 This earth, in its sanctified and immortal state, will be made like unto crystal and will be a Urim and Thummim to the inhabitants who dwell thereon, whereby all things pertaining to an inferior kingdom, or all kingdoms of a lower order, will be manifest to those who dwell on it; and this earth will be Christ’s.
10 Then the white stone mentioned in Revelation 2:17, will become a Urim and Thummim to each individual who receives one, whereby things pertaining to a higher order of kingdoms will be made known; (D&C 130:9-10, emphasis added)
I love that idea that we will have things pertaining to a higher order revealed to us. But I don’t want to wait for that; I want to search for things of a higher order now. I suppose that if that is what I search for, that is what I will find.

Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ipadfix/4498992951/

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