Online Audio Tracts
An old idea with a new twist...
In a society where everything is — if not already, is becoming — computer based, we have found a unique way of getting the gospel to the masses via the internet. Actually, we have taken an old idea, and fused it together with the "modern way" of doing things.
Flashback to the 80's...
Allow me to share the history of Online Audio Tracts...
June 1986 (two months after Bob and I were married) we were living in Astoria, Queens, NY. At that time, our group was so small that we couldn't afford to rent a place for services. So, we met in our apartment, once a week, for Bible study, which we conducted like a regular church service. There was singing, prayers, fellowship and sermons.
To be public, and open to guests, our small group would meet on the same street corner at the same time every Sunday. The address was printed on all our tracts. Obviously, only serious enquirers showed-up. After waiting a reasonable amount of time, usually 15 to 30 minutes, we would walk back to our apartment for some light refreshments and church service.
Always on the lookout for interesting or different ways to get people's attention, Pastor Bob got the idea of starting a phone ministry.
Pastor Bob's idea was to record a short gospel message on an answering machine. Since there were no hi-tech gizmos available to help us back then, this was a painstaking process! Pastor Bob would write up a sermon that had to be exactly 3 minutes long, because if it wasn't, the cassette which played on a loop would record over the beginning of the message.
With the Lord's leading, we devised a way for people to call the number. We printed up business cards with the title of the message or a catchy short phrase or question that would peak the curiosity of those who found the cards and phone number. When the message and cards were ready to go, we would make a "midnight raid." Literally. With rolls of scotch tape and stacks of cards, our small band of church members would go to areas that were busy by day. And, late at night, with tape dispensers in hand, we taped these cards to doors, storefront gates and windows, apartment building entrances, parking meters, etc. Any place we could tape them, without causing damage to property, we put them up.
By the time we arrived home after our raid, the phone was already ringing off the hook. Literally, hundreds of calls came in after these raids.
Though we don't know if anyone ever got saved as a result of this ministry, MANY people heard all, or at least part, of the Gospel message.
A total of 5 messages were done.
Fast forward to the present, we still have the original cassettes these messages were recorded on, 20+ years ago! They have been digitized, and today they have been put back into use.
If you would like to listen to any, or all of them; please click on any selection below. Share them with your friends, relatives, co-workers and acquaintances. Feel free to link your website or blog to them, too.
Now on YouTube...
What's in a name?...
After the Lord helped us link these two ideas together, we pondered what to call the thing. Let's face it, if you mention the word gospel, or messages to most lost people, they probably wouldn't want anything to do with it. But, with a name that doesn't ring out its Bible affiliation, there's at least a chance someone might just listen — even for a few moments — to the glorious Gospel of Christ. Remember; these messages were designed to make someone THINK about their future. And, remember, "Faith cometh by HEARING...", and, "How shall they hear without a preacher?" (Romans 10:14-17) In this case the preacher is on digital audio. After listening to the message, they are invited to click on a link that brings them directly to our invitation page where they are welcome to read one, or all, of our Gospel tracts, and/or play a short Gospel film.
Online Audio Tracts is an accurate name for this ministry, and bendable enough to peak the curiosity of anyone who hears or sees it referred to as such. Hopefully it will intrigue people to visit the sites.
What is neat about putting these audio tracts — former phone messages — on line, is that anyone in the entire world (!) can listen to them. Christians anywhere in the world can print up business cards with the headline and web address to pass out, like we used to do in New York. If they have a home computer and printer, small batches for each "tract" could be printed, and distributed appropriately. For example: someone with flames painted on their car, or, wearing a shirt with something about Satan on it, might accept a little business card from you that says, "HELL" imprinted with the appropriate internet address. They might even think it's a joke, but, if they check it out, they might get saved because of it.
Christians can link to them on their site, blog, or signature line of emails. The link(s) can be posted at online forums such as message/discussion forums, classifieds etc. (You can make your own "midnight raids", without leaving the privacy of your own home!)
The intent of this ministry outreach is to get the gospel out to anyone, anywhere, anytime. People all over the globe can visit these sites and hear a clear presentation of the gospel.
Though, as a church, in size and number, we are small — like the hymn, "Little Is Much When God Is In It", God is still "...able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think." (Ephesians 3:20a) We are able to do what some big works simply don't have time to do.
These sites are ONLINE AUDIO TRACTS. They are free and at your disposal. Here's your opportunity to join us in helping lost Sinners to "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and...be saved...." (Acts 16:31) What will you do with the information now set before you?