Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Where Do You Leave Tracts?


As I have written before, I frequently find myself being targeted with tracts. With Carnival upon us and Mardi Gras only one week away, I expect to be the recipient of a few more. So I was intrigued to run across a thread entitled, Where do you leave Tracts?  I can always use suggestions for how to avoid them.

The thread began with this post:
I want your creative ideas on where to leave tracts.
Thanks to my new job (Christian bookstore) I have access to a wide variety of tracts! Of course I still have to buy them, but at least I've now got a ready supplier!
So, I keep a package in my purse.... but now I'm wondering where would be good places to leave one, besides a doctor's office, waiting room, etc. etc.
Where do YOU leave tracts?
Me? In the recycling bin.
If I get any of the tracts about islam[sic] I put them in Korans in the library and bookstores.By about islam[sic] I mean Christian tracts exposing islam[sic] for what it is. 
I used to leave tracts at a public "share" table in the library but I did that one day, went back a few hours later, and they were in the trash. I don't think the librarians did that, more likely one of the library patrons from a college atheist society. 
Maybe it was a librarian who was tired of patrons complaining about the tracts in the Korans.
1st off make sure they have a local church name on them,so in case whoever reads it is interested they have a place to go.

To complain?

Phone booths are good,as are bulletin boards at colleges and supermarkets.I help deliver food to people so sometimes I can leave a tract in a hallway.And if you are ever stopped by the police for a traffic error,be courageous and give the policeman a tract too.

Oh, I so want to be there when you do.
Where DON'T I leave tracts? LOL, I leave them everywhere. I keep a supply in my car and everytime I get outta the car, I stuff a few in my pockets to leave around. 
ANYWHERE is game!! I've put them inside library books...phone booths...benches at the mall...rest rooms...even lay one on top of the gas pump thingie while I'm gassing up. Everytime I grocery shop, I leave a few in carts, LOL, or even on the store shelves.
The possibilities are simply ENDLESS!!!
The fine for littering is $250.

I leave them inside the handle of the gas pump when I fuel up so the next person has to grab the tract as they grab the pump to fill up their car. I also just went to disneyworld[sic] last summer and I left them all over that place. People from all over the world are there.
People from all over the world, learning what litterbugs we are in the US.

I've left tracts on a coffee shop table, inside a magazine at the salon, on a park bench on a windless day, or in the grocery cart. If you're worried that your tract might be ignored, you could hand one to someone outside the library, at a park, downtown, on a college campus, or at the cashier's stand as you're checking out.
Okay, seriously, these guys have no idea that litter laws apply to them, too, do they?

Another place is on top of newspaper machines, or inside of them if you buy a paper.
Also, many Catholic churches have a Mass on late Saturday afternoon. they are open a half hour or so before the Mass for confession. 
In the back of their churches they usually have some type of literature table. 
I leave those "Do You Know You're Going To Heaven" type tracts there.
Leaving tracts in rival churches. [jihad envy] I bet you wouldn't dare put them in a mosque. [/jihad envy]

Putting them in someone's hand is always the best. If one is not comfortable doing that, leaving them in nice, public places is great (with permission). I am not comfortable at all leaving tracts in public restrooms...just seems inappropriate.
But leaving them on gas pump handles, where they will be in the way of the next customer, does not.
I leave them at store counters, tables,plant them in pockets ,open purses, in arcades, waiting rooms,books,under doors, in drawers, mail boxes, ect.[sic]
That one drew a prompt response:
Leaving tracts in mailboxes is against the law. As is placing them in people's open things. One could get into big trouble if caught doing that. I used to leave tracts on store merchandise, but I quit doing that after I heard that doing so is a poor testimony. Imagine being a store clerk on duty, straightening up a rumpled stack of jeans and finding a 4 Things God wants you to Know tract in the middle of the blue jeans. It's going to get tossed and will be looked upon as littering. As Christians we need to make sure that in our witnessing, we aren't breaking the law by littering, or other things like that. It's a poor testimony to a watching world. 
Our lives are walking gospels. This is what the world sees on a daily basis and reads. In James, James says to "Be ye doers of the word and not hearers only deceiving your own selves." Don't get me wrong, I think handing out tracts is a wonderful ministry. But too often I see people who claim to be Christians. They are all crabby and cross with store employees, or aren't polite to them, and then expect the store employees to take a tract and read it. That person's life speaks louder to the store employee than that paper does. 
Brethren we need to make sure we not only know God's word and share it with others, it needs to get down into our hearts and change our lives as well.
You know, that post makes a lot of sense.

It also got a response:
Really I didn't know any of that was against the law? [sic]Thank you for telling me.
Really? You had no idea that leaving pieces of paper strewn around is what people mean by littering? You had no suspicion that putting something into another person’s open purse might be frowned on by the legal authorities? Not to mention scary to the owner of the purse?
I deliver to people,s [sic] houses and was already warned about witnessing by my boss..I leave what you could call time release tracts.Tracts that will not be found for a long time due to where you put them.Say on top of a tall cabinet,behind a desk,things like that.This way God in his providence can still reveal the tract to the occupant whenever He chooses simply by moving some furniture or cleaning on top of a cabinet.
You know what else has a time release system? Jail.

Throwing one in a car window is fine but please DON'T put one under the windshield wiper, folks!!! I dunno about YOUR states, but it is illegal in mine. It's called "tampering", just by TOUCHING another person's automobile, and you can get a fine.
One time I left flyers on a parking lot FULL of cars, putting them under the windshield wipers. A cop just happened to see me and them (lol) and HE MADE ME REMOVE EVERY ONE OF THEM!!! It was summertime and hot as blazes out. I just about had a heat stroke going back through that large parking lot, lolol. He actually STOOD there and watched me, to make sure I removed every single one, believe it or not.
NEVER AGAIN!!! So please don't do that. There are soooo many other good ideas!
A police officer enforcing the law. Just one more sign of a fallen world.

I tend to stick with my tract-in-a-bag-of-candy. Living in Houston, I have 2 languages, and 2 types of candy. The Spanish types like a hot, salty fruit candy. UGH. They sure get excited when I hand THAT over.
Spanish types? And I know the “UGH” is directed at the candy, not the Spanish trick-or-treaters, but “UGH” is right. Can’t you feel the love? 

There was one house in my neighborhood that I discouraged my son from going to on Halloween because they handed out those scary you’re-going-to-hell Jack Chick tracts.
I try to go wherever God leads me. Today he had me hand out a New Testament to an obviously Muslim guy running the Dollar store. He was surprisingly open to receiving it.
What would make him “obviously Muslim”, anyway? Was he praying toward Mecca when the writer walked into the store? Did his T-shirt show a picture of Salman Rushdie with a target over it?

One of the other posts referred to an evangelist as having been “saved from a tract.” I wish I knew how he did that. I’d sure like to be saved from a tract, a lot of them, in fact. 

10 comments:

  1. I find the whole tract thing bizarre to say the least. We don't really get it here, thank God.

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  2. We didn't get them where I grew up, but I don't know if that's still true. John and I went to a Mardi Gras parade today, and of course we saw the usual suspects handing some out. Wherever two or three are gathered together enjoying themselves, there shall be tracts also.

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  3. The idea of dropping a tract (or anything else) into a stranger's open handbag is just jaw-droppingly shocking. How much mind-numbing arrogance would you need to think that that level of intrusiveness was appropriate? Do people actually expect these things to be welcomed?

    TRiG.

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    1. I notice that that post drew an immediate rebuke, so I think only one person thought it was a good idea to do so. Most of the responses were along the lines of leave them lying around where people will find them, which in many cases is simply littering, but at least not scary.

      The people who distribute those tracts honestly think they are saving you from an eternity of hell, so I can understand how littering, inconveniencing sales people and the next person trying to use the gas pump, and insulting Mass goers or users of the library's Koran pale in comparison. What they don't seem to get is that they make sure that the people who receive their tracts are automatically rendered in the worst frame of mind to read them by the lack of consideration of the tract distributors. That one post that began "Leaving tracts in mailboxes is against the law" stood out as an oddity in the whole thread. Even the person who warned against putting tracts on windshields seemed more put out by having to retrieve them in the hot sun (what, did it warm up 20 degrees between the time s/he distributed them and the time s/he had to pick them up?) than supportive of the laws against messing with people's stuff.

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  4. I truly hope the consensus was that those tracts cunningly designed to look like a 20$ bill are NEVER EVER EVER appropriate.

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    1. I think one person mentioned using them to enclose a tip, but not instead of a tip.

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  5. how does one go about making a citizens' arrest if you see someone littering like this?

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  6. Most Christians don't do it the way that this makes it out to seem. As a Christian, I don't litter for fear of the tract being thrown away or ignored(plus, it is illegal). And as for the under the windshield wiper thing...why is it ok to solicit with flyers for a band under windshield wipers but not ok to put a tract under one? I just really see a double standard here.

    If you don't want to read them, I can't make you. You can't make anyone believe anything. Salvation is a gift, you can freely receive or freely reject. But, I don't understand the hostility. If someone gives you one you could just throw it away, not get angry over a piece of paper given to you in good faith. We don't want anyone to go to Hell. That's why we do it. It's meant to be a gesture of love, not of annoyance.

    For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. (John 3:17)

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    1. 1) I get the same ones over and over again.

      2) Because most of the ones I see being distributed are being distributed by one kind of Christians to another kind of Christians, not to anyone who never heard of Jesus to begin with. I hear a lot about Jesus in the church I go to, oddly enough.

      3) I got the impression that the cop who made the person remove all the tracts would have made anyone posting flyers on the windshields remove them. It was illegal to put something on a car in that particular location.

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    2. I didn't really get the impression that anyone on this blog was a Christian. I was really just posting to say that we aren't all like that. I agree that when Christians pass out tracts they should be general, they should be given to those who haven't heard the Gospel message. I don't understand why someone would give a tract about the errors in Catholicism to an atheist, but I don't want to judge another persons witnessing tactics.

      I see your point on the cop thing, but most people are just anti-religion literature. It's really sad, because the majority of literature passed out is Christian. We are concerned with everyone's eternal security, and just want them to know their 2 choices.

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