Thomas Strock is the 16-year-old student who designed and built a new app in the iPhone App Store called Share Prayer. Love it when students step out and do something big like this? Super cool, here’s 5 questions with the man:
Tell us about the app!
SharePrayer is an app that helps people put God first, even in a world full of distractions. SharePrayer has two main features – the ability to set alerts to remind you to stop what you’re doing and pray, and the ability to share and receive prayer requests from friends and family.
Where did your inspiration for it come from?
When I was 12, I published a children’s book called Tomato Turtle, and since them I’ve been involved in a Christian author Facebook group where we share ideas and tips about promoting your book. Since it was a Christian authors group though, lots of people would also post prayer requests there. That’s what gave me the original idea for the app. I see prayer requests not only in that group, but also on my main Facebook feed, Twitter, and also through email. I’d love to be able to pray for everybody, but it’s hard to keep track of all the different places you see prayer requests. So I wanted a place where I could have a list of everything I wanted to pray for plus keep everyone else’s prayer requests in one location so I can remember everything.
16 years old! Amazing … what’s next for you from here?
Honestly, who knows? Maybe more apps, maybe more books, maybe something completely different – it all depends. I love doing things that are fun and challenge me. So in the future, whatever meets those two criteria, that’s what I’ll be doing!
What would you say to other teenagers with a dream to do something like this?
If you have a passion for something, the only way you’re going to achieve it is through action. Whether your passion is becoming the next great baseball player or making mobile apps, unless you take action, you’re never going to get any closer to your goals. Before making SharePrayer I knew nothing about making mobile apps. It would’ve been easy for me to use that as an excuse to wait until I’ve taken classes on app development, learned more about the business, etc. to actually take action. Instead, I dove in head-first and took action, learned from my mistakes, and eventually found success. The same holds true no matter what your passion is – Albert Pujols didn’t becoming an All-Star baseball player by reading books about how to play baseball. He became one by taking action everyday and practicing.
Prove your not a robot. Tell us an embarrassing moment from your childhood!
When I was around six, I didn’t really like playing soccer, but my parents would sign me up anyway to make sure I was running around and getting exercise. I normally did OK, but one game a bunch of my family was there to watch me but I was particularly bored. I found a big red leaf in the middle of the field that was apparently more exciting than the actual game. I don’t remember the game too well now, but it turns out my mom was videotaping me, and for around 10 minutes I was standing in the middle of the field walking in a small circle around this big leaf. Meanwhile, the game is continuing and everyone is running back and forth across the field while I’m still just standing there doing my own thing, walking in a circle around this leaf. Wasn’t too embarrassing at the time, as I was so fascinated with this leaf and had no idea what was going on around me – but it’s really funny to go back and watch it now.
Thanks for sharing, Thomas! Student leaders rule! Get the app and more info here.