a collection of short articles on topics relating to CQOD
Spotlight for the week of November 14-November 18, 2011:
on CQOD for Twitter and smart phone
“CQOD on the go!” is the email version of CQOD formatted for smart phone. It has been regularly available for a couple of years. In keeping with the spirit (or hype) of the age, each version of the CQOD email provides a Twitter link that is preloaded with a message giving the author and title of the day’s quotation, together with a link to “CQOD on the go!” for that particular day. A similar Twitter link is provided on the daily web page.
The daily tweet is also posted on the CQOD Twitter account. Readers may follow CQOD at @curatorcqod and follow the link to the smart phone version of CQOD.
Nor is Twitter the only way to be prompted to CQOD on your smart phone. As pointed out earlier, there is an RSS feed for CQOD. CQOD comes through very nicely on a smart phone RSS reader ap. There are several excellent free aps available. The RSS feed URL is http://cqod.com/r/feed
A quick update on the Facebook situation: thanks to some gracious volunteers, and particularly to a friend of CQOD, Bryan Owens, CQOD is now posted daily on the CQOD fanpage, using a remarkable online package called HootSuite. So, the crisis is averted—warm thanks to all who helped.
Keeping up with today’s growth and changes in social media is interesting and challenging. If you know of a new medium where CQOD would be a welcome addition, please write to me.
Spotlight for the week of November 7-November 11, 2011:
on the CQOD liturgical calendar
From the beginning, CQOD has included elements of the liturgical calendar in all its daily publications. The liturgical calendar presented in CQOD is derived from that used by the Western church for hundreds of years. This includes holy days, feasts, and commemorations.
Many people have written asking about the source of the CQOD liturgical calendar. When I began CQOD, I found a proposed liturgical on an Anglican cathedral web site (now long withdrawn), and I liked it because it honored a number of writers not mentioned in the official Anglican calendar at the time, e.g., Sundar Singh, C. S. Lewis, William Wilberforce, and others. So, I started including it in the CQOD web site and mailings.
Since that time, I have taken the liberty of adding several other prominent Christian writers to the list of commemorations, e.g., Arthur John Gossip, John R. W. Stott (who recently passed), Lesslie Newbigin, A. W. Tozer, and Roland Allen. I believe that this is appropriate because the purpose of the liturgical calendar is to remind us of what God has done—to exhibit the work of the Holy Spirit in the church age, through the life and work of His people.
In support of this purpose, CQOD often includes quotations that are appropriate to a holy day or season, such as, Advent, Christmas, Easter, Ascension, and Pentecost. On those days that celebrate a writer, CQOD often presents a quotation from that writer, as part of the celebration.
There is a link to the current year’s liturgical calendar on the sidebar of the CQOD home page. Other years are also available. The feasts and commemorations of persons whose writing appears in CQOD are linked to their respective entries in the author index.
Spotlight for the week of October 31-November 4, 2011:
on CQOD for your web page
Would you like for CQOD to appear on your web page or blog? CQOD provides code that will reproduce the quotation for the day right on your web site.
Insert this in the body of your web page or the sidebar or bottom of your blog template, and everyone who looks at the page will see the current Christian Quotation of the Day displayed inside a box (just the quotation, not the Scripture or other features of CQOD email). The dimensions of the box conform to the space available. To see how this looks, go to the CQOD Web Home, at
Spotlight for the week of October 24-28, 2011:
on the CQOD Facebook fan page
Alas, the ever-changing Internet! CQOD on Facebook was to be the spotlight topic this week. But I have just found out that the main feature of the CQOD fan page is going to be dropped.
For the last couple of years, Facebook has provided a way to post the RSS feed from the CQOD blog to the CQOD Facebook page. As a result, many users have posted their comments and “likes” to CQOD daily postings while remaining on Facebook. Unfortunately, this feature is being discontinued at the end of October. My researches, so far, have failed to turn up a reasonable alternative.
Nevertheless, there is going to be content on the CQOD fan page, located at
Anyone can access the fan page, whether a member of Facebook or not.
In the coming weeks, I will be investigating ways to make good use of the CQOD fan page. Anyone with suggestions is invited to write to me. Posting CQOD by hand to the CQOD fan page is a possible but not very welcome alternative.
Meanwhile to the many who have joined and posted to the CQOD fan page, thanks and I hope we can further improve its usefulness in future.
Spotlight for the week of October 17-21, 2011:
on the Poetry First-line Index
Did you ever have an experience when you could remember the poem or song but not the title of the source or the author? That is what the poetry first-line index is for! If you can remember the first couple of words, you can easily see whether the poem is present in the collection or not, and if so, there is a link to the CQOD page where the text is.
There are about 230 poems in the CQOD database, many of them classic works of hymnody or devotional poetry. Granted that this is not a large part of CQOD or even a very large collection of poems, but as it grows with time, the poetry first-line index can significantly shorten you search time.
Also, if you are looking for a poem or hymn, for some particular use, the poetry first-line index provides a compact hunting-ground for themes and ideas. For each poem, the index lists the entire first line, the author, and the date it was published, with a link to the CQOD page. And since it is an ordinary web page, it can be searched for a particular word using your browser.
So, try it out and enjoy. A link to the poetry first-line index is located on the right sidebar of every CQOD web page.
Spotlight for the week of October 10-14, 2011:
on the Scripture and Subject Indexes
This week’s spotlight is on the Scripture and subject indexes, particularly as an aid to those writing papers or sermons. Both indexes provide systematic access to the deep collection of quotations that CQOD has published.
CQOD provides a list of Scripture references and subjects for each quotation on the CQOD web site. One of the Scriptures referenced is the one that heads the CQOD email. The others are selected because of some connection to the quotation: an internal reference, a similar subject, or an association that the quotation suggests. Likewise with the subjects, drawn from a list of 572 topics.
The Scripture references and subjects have been assembled into indexes, so that one can start with a Scripture passage and find all the quotations in the CQOD database that list that passage, and likewise all the quotations that share a given subject. There are over 3400 Scripture passages (some overlapping) referenced over 7000 times from the quotations. The 572 subjects are referenced over 12,000 times in the quotation database.
That is a lot to work with. If the user is persistent, it is probable that relevant and usable material will come to light. It must be admitted that some of the Scripture and subject assignments are subjective, and with the Scriptures, no attempt has been made to be comprehensive, that is, to include all similar or parallel passages.
As with the author and title indexes, the Scripture and subject indexes are maintained and updated automatically, as quotations and references are continually added. Access is available on the right sidebar of any CQOD web page.
So, try it out. With a Bible passage or a topic in hand, there is a good chance you can enrich your present writing and thinking, via the CQOD Scripture and subject indexes.
Spotlight for the week of October 3-7, 2011:
on the Author and Title Indexes
Just as the availability of links provides a new way to make bibliographical citations, so with indexes. Each quotation on the CQOD web site has a link to an entry in the author index (if there is a specific author) and also in the title index (if there is a particular book or journal). The author and title indexes are also conveniently available from any CQOD web page, through a link on the right sidebar near the top.
It is routine for any reference work or collection to have comprehensive, alphabetical author and title indexes. The CQOD indexes provide a complete, linked list of the quotations drawn from each author and title, respectively. The indexes are completely automated so that they are updated whenever the quotation database changes, just as it will be when I upload the quotations for 2012 in the next few days.
The author index has a few helpful extras in it. First, under each author is a list of the titles from which the author is quoted. These titles are also links to the title index. Further, for each author who appears in the liturgical calendar (and there are a lot of them), the date of observance is noted. But there is more.
Whenever possible, I have included links to author biographical information from the Christian Classics Ethereal Library, the Catholic Encyclopedia, Wikipedia (use with caution), James Kiefer’s Christian Biographies, and The Christian History Institute, all marked accordingly. Further information about these sources is printed at the bottom of the right sidebar. There is also a sprinkling of other biographical links to high-quality sites. If you know of a good source for biographical data on one or more of the authors listed, please let me know.
The title index also has some additional features: links back to the respective authors in the author index, and whenever available, links to source texts. Where the source text is not online, I have given a link to the WorldCat, so that one can find the source in a conveniently located library. One special note: since many of the classical quotations come from books that are themselves part of collections (e.g., My Life in The Complete Works of ..., vol. x), I have often indicated both the original book source and the collection where it is to be found, with direct links to both.
We live in a remarkable new age of information convenience and availability, enabling us to be more comprehensive and more accurate than ever before. The bibliographical and index work of CQOD is an effort to make those advantages available to ministry.
Spotlight for the week of September 26-30, 2011:
on CQOD Daily Posting
Every night at midnight, Pacific Time, the CQOD service posts the daily email to two lists, the plain-text list and the HTML list. Given that I live in Dallas, Texas, you may rest assured that I do not stay up until 2 a.m. each night to post CQOD by hand. In fact, the daily CQOD email is prepared many days ahead of time and stored on the server until it is time to send it.
At the same time, the script that sends the daily email also sends a similar post to the CQOD blog. The CQOD blog holds all CQOD mailings for the last two years and into the foreseeable future. The blog gives CQOD users an opportunity to post comments and responses, of which there have been many. It also hosts some other material, including some of my own essays and a little list called “Caught my eye...”, amazing stuff, but not always in a good way—food for thought.
The CQOD blog is located at
The next part is for serious techies: the blogger automatically produces an RSS feed. So, there is an opportunity on the blog's sidebar to subscribe to the CQOD feed, using whatever newsreader you prefer. Finally, the feedburner supports a simple headline animator, also located on the sidebar. You can get the very simple code for this animated GIF and post it on any web page.
So, take a look at the CQOD blog and its associated features. And remember, whether you are dreaming in adoration or steaming in outrage, you can always let the rest of us know about it on the CQOD blog!
The CQOD server is operated by Agathon Group, composed of some of the young people that ran GospelCom. Warm thanks are due to Agathon (which means “that which is good” in Greek; see Romans 8:28 and Philippians 1:6) for steady, reliable service. Their web site is located at
Spotlight for the week of September 19-23, 2011:
on Book Links
“See the book:”
Because of Google Books, CQOD is able to do far more than provide bibliographical data for the quotations. CQOD routinely provides a direct link to the text itself, in electronic form.
When Google Books came on line, I knew that this would revolutionize the bibliographical task, and that a new kind of bibliography could emerge, one that identifies the quoted text in the original context. Little by little, I have converted the CQOD database of quotations to this new form. Here are the current results.
54%—Google Books full context view
25%—Google Books snippet view
13%—WorldCat reference only
4%—Reference to other online document
1%—Google Books book reference (no text)
4%—No electronic reference
Many of those that have no electronic reference are quotations drawn from personal correspondence or other sources that have not been reproduced. Note also that WorldCat references help one to locate the book in any library in the world. It is a wonderful facility.
The presence of electronic texts also permitted me to check the quotations for accuracy far more easily and effectively. Here are those current results.
95%—Quotation checked for accuracy
5%—Quotation not checked
I wish that this meant that there is no possibility of sending you a CQOD email that has errors. Alas, it does not, as my many sharp-eyed friends on this list occasionally remind me. But it does mean that the text you receive has a much higher probability of being authentic.
So, try it out. Follow a “See the book” link, and explore the vast archives that are now available to us.
Spotlight for the week of September 12-16, 2011:
on CQOD Search
This week’s spotlight feature is the CQOD search capability. This feature is available on every page of the CQOD web site. The search box is located near the bottom of the sidebar (which is the narrow column of text on the right side of each page). Simply enter the text you want to search for into the text box and click on the “Search” button. The results will appear on a new page, listing each page in the CQOD web site in which the search text appears.
The CQOD search facility uses the Google search engine. Since the search is confined to the CQOD web site, Google is able to find all the relevant pages quickly and accurately. Moreover, the CQOD search uses the same syntax as Google search: entering the words tax and collector finds all the pages containing those two words, while entering “tax collector” in quotation marks finds only those pages that contain the exact phrase.
One caution: it is generally not helpful to search for very common words, especially those that appear on CQOD web pages outside of quotations, as for instance, the words “quotation” or “Christian”. Try to choose words that tend to narrow down the text you are looking for.
To try out CQOD search, just browse the CQOD home page at www.cqod.com, scroll to the bottom, and enter a search text in the box. It is easy, and it may hold some surprises for you.
Spotlight for the week of September 5-9, 2011:
on More Devotionals
In the coming weeks, this space will contain notes about some features and functions of CQOD that not everyone is fully aware of. Message contents will change about once per week.
This week, I want to draw your attention to a particular page on the CQOD web site, titled “More Devotionals”. There is a link to this page on the CQOD home page, or you can go to
Most of the devotionals listed here are daily publications. All of them offer fine spiritual food.
So, if you are seeking for more material for your quiet time meditation or another way to start the day, look into any of these fine publications.
Welcome to the Spotlights Archive.
Here are some other important links to help you get around:
CQOD for today
CQOD on the go!
Use our double opt-in listserve to receive CQOD by email
CQOD daily index
All monthly archives
What’s New on CQOD
Search CQOD (or see below)
Facebook CQOD Fan Page
Follow CQOD on Twitter
CQOD on the Web
CQOD Liturgical Calendar
Mere Christianity: a conversation
Simple Songs for Psalms
Quotations Bible Study
Jonah: a miracle play
Ruth: a play
Also visit these organizations:
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