Our EPM office recently received this note, and I think it inadvertently suggests a strategy for reaching people with the gospel:
In May I purchased 30 If God Is Good, Why Do We Hurt? booklets. I intended to give them to my church’s graduating seniors, but I thought about this too late for the booklets to arrive in time. I decided to give them to the youth leaders and some of my other friends, then put the rest on our literature table in the foyer of the church.
Last week one of the leaders told me that when he went on a cruise, he had the booklet on the night stand by his bed in his room. The lady who took care of his room saw it and asked if she could read it. He told her she could not only read it, but she could have it. She was grateful and told him that she would also have her husband read it as well. What an amazing God we serve!
I ordered and received another 40 of these booklets and will continue to pass them out and as long as they continue to disappear from the table, I will replace them. Thanks for a great tool for the kingdom.
This got me thinking. Suppose in our homes and our workspaces we simply strategically place a piece of literature with an interesting title, so those who see it may notice it and be prompted to think. They may not act on the thought now, but later. Or they may say, "Is that a good book?", "Have you read it?" or "What's that about?"
Or, as in the case of the man on the cruise, they may actually ask to borrow it. Even if you’re shy about passing out booklets, this strategy is different because people will be taking the initiative themselves, and you will just be helping them when they do.
Many people, including myself, regularly give away the If God is Good Why Do We Hurt? and Heaven booklets. I leave them with servers at restaurants (always with a tip that's 20% or more), give them to people on planes, and have them on me for checkers at stores. However, as the note demonstrates, this is not the only alternative. Simply making the booklets visible to others may be enough to prompt people to ask about them or the subject matter. And when they do, you can offer them the booklet and follow up later to see what they thought.
In some cases, we won’t be in a position to follow up and may not see the person again in this life. But consider that one day, in the presence of Christ, you may have a person who read the booklet and came to faith in Christ, or were strengthened in their faith, say to you, “Thank you for giving me that booklet—God used it powerfully in my life!”
Do you have a creative way of sharing booklets or tracts? Please feel free to share in a comment.