I Wanted Them to Have the Same Joy
By Chad Bernik
Chad Bernick and his family are missionaries in Wainwright, on Alaska's far North Slope. He grew up on Chick tracts and relates how he uses them as a soulwinner.
While growing up, I didn't always have a steady supply of tracts and I wasn't always spiritually minded, but I used Chick tracts repeatedly throughout my time in public school. I remember reading the Crusader Comics and having my eyes opened to some great truths as a young man.
I grew up playing video games, reading comic books, and played sports like soccer and yard football. I watched cable TV, went to church, and hung out with the neighborhood kids. Chick tracts helped keep me from going wayward and made it easy for me to give the gospel to my friends. It got them to ask questions that would get me stirred up for God. They asked me questions that made me want to learn more Bible.
In my teenage years, I began leading Bible studies at school, first in the gymnasium every morning during my sophomore year and eventually in the library once a week during my senior year. I instructed my peers on the need to be a publick witness. I wanted them to have the same joy that I got from witnessing to others. I wanted them to get the thrill of doing something good you were afraid to do and being blessed by God for it.
One Wednesday during our library Bible meeting, I brought a bunch of stacks of Chick tracts prepared for evangelizing the entire student body. I told the class, "Some of you have been saved for years and you've never really told anyone else how to be saved. That's going to change right now! We're going to give these to every student in the break area. Let's pray and go do it!"
We did. A dozen of us handed out hundreds of tracts in a few minutes. Almost everyone stopped and began perusing the tracts.
I'm so thankful to have had several teachers that were born again believers. They took the brunt of adversity that would come for such a radical display of evangelism on the public-school grounds.
Several students mocked and threw their copies in the trash, but for the most part, a hush of Holy Spirit conviction swept over the entire school that day. Several other times, I seeded the cars in the parking lot with tracts. I was burdened for my peers and Chick tracts made reaching them with the gospel quick and easy.
Into adulthood, I went to Bible school and began doing street ministry. My friends and I passed out thousands of tracts during this time. We would preach publickly in the downtown areas of major cities and give Chick tracts to any that would take them.
It was during this time that God began to toughen me up more through the pointed rejection we received more often in the city atmosphere. Whenever it seemed I was getting out of balance or off track in an area, Chick tracts helped me stay straight because they contain so much scripture. Even times in my youth when I wasn't living much like a Christian, Chick tracts were a simple way to put out Bible truth.
My oldest son came to repentance and accepted Jesus as his Saviour after reading Flight 144 when he was six years old. He evangelizes his teenage peers using Chick tracts. When my oldest son and I made a mission's survey trip to the Philippines last year, we evangelized using mostly Chick tracts.
I know of many pastors that use Chick tracts amidst their other evangelistic weapons and there is a common bond between soulwinners that see the usefulness of these great tools.