I was hungry for Him…..
There came a time about a year and a half after I decided to follow
w the Lord that there was a big drive in our church towards people receiving the baptism of the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking in tongues as the Spirit gives utterance.
It started out with the young people holding prayer meetings six O’clock every evening for about two weeks, we did not plan it to go on so long, it just kept going as God was just blessing us with his presence and power, then the rest of the church joined in and took over and we continued as some of the elders taught us about the Holy Spirit.
Honestly, as I write this and think about it, I’m not sure if I can tell the difference between being filled with the Holy Spirit and receiving the Holy Spirit’s baptism because in our church culture we use the term interchangeably to mean that Pentecostal experience of being endowed with power for service in the person of the Holy Spirit with the initial evidence of speaking in other tongues as the Spirit gives utterance all I know is that I wanted *Him. I was hungry for Him I wanted Him to fill me; I wanted this power so much that it hurt.
…I was not receiving, something was wrong with my believing.
People were being filled every day of these meetings with the evidence of speaking in tongues and I wasn’t.There was no joy in my heart my friends were being filled left, right and centre and I wasn’t. Every night as we met, the elders would take us (the seekers) into a back room and teach us about the Holy Spirit as the rest of the church would set the tone of worship in the main sanctuary so each night as we were brought out of the back room the church would be in high worship, it was awesome, I could feel the presence of God but just could not get that breakthrough, I was willing to do whatever it took. My days were consumed with thoughts about the promise of the Holy Spirit and as I wondered why I could not “get filled” one thought that stuck with me as I learned it was that the Holy Ghost is promised to everyone that believes so it became apparent to me that it was a faith issue. Simply put, if I was not receiving, something was wrong with my believing. I told myself that I believed but the evidence of being filled with the Holy Ghost was not being seen. I was very concerned.
One of our teachers told us not to worry we should just clean up our lives by confessing all our sins and wait on the Lord. I confessed to God everything that I could think of, as long as it looked like a sin to me, I even confessed the things I wasn’t so sure about just in case. This went on for days without the desired result so one day in desperation I stayed home from work, I was home alone, I closed the doors and windows, made sure all the curtains were drawn so no one could tell that I was home, I did not want to be disturbed. I spent the entire morning praying and crying to God, I went on, again and again, searching myself and confessing my faults to God but still could not get my breakthrough. Finally, I sat down on my bed and said to the Lord, Jesus you said you are my friend, sit down right here beside me and tell me about myself and Lord whatever you tell me about myself and I will confess it back to you.
“you do not know who Jesus is.”
Without a doubt that God was there with me and hearing me. I did not believe that God was withholding the Holy Spirit from me. Surely that it was some un-confessed sin that was blocking my faith to receive. Therefore I prayed Lord tell me about myself and I will confess it back to you. I know God heard me because I discovered things about myself that I was even afraid to open my mouth to mention in confession, finally when I had spent hours crying and confessing my sins to God, He said one last thing that shocked me. He said to me “you do not know who Jesus is.”
I was ready to start rebuking the devil. How could this be true? I know I am a believer, I love the things of God I know that Jesus is the Son Of God, Born of the Virgin Mary, died on the cross for my sins, rose from the grave, ascended to heaven and is now at the right hand of the father ……a whole lot of things that I knew about Jesus went through my mind even how much I love him and wanted to serve him, how could I say that I don’t know who he is, I would be lying. Then I remembered that I told the Lord that I would confess to Him whatever He told me about myself, so reluctantly I said it, “Lord I don’t know who Jesus is.”
I am the way the truth and the lift no man cometh unto the father except by me
I went back to our church that night but did not join with everyone as usual, instead, I knelt by myself at a bench in a corner of the church hall. People tried to get me to join the rest of the group but I did not. I was focused on one thing, I had confessed earlier that I don’t know who Jesus is because God told me that I don’t know who Jesus is, I was accepting this as truth and I was waiting on God to reveal to me who Jesus is. It was a hard night for me but I waited on God. Finally, I found myself I a large hall there was a presence, I knew it was God I wanted to approach Him but I could not until a thin veil appeared between me and God.
With this veil between us, I could now draw near to God, I was now in His presence so close that I could touch Him (I didn’t touch Him, though at that moment I knew I could). I went home that night not speaking to anyone, all I could think about was being in that hall with God with this veil between us. I can’t remember exactly what time of the night it was that it happened but then came the words “this veil represents Jesus”. After that, everything I knew about Jesus and his saving power came into sharp focus. “I am the way the truth and the lift no man cometh unto the father except by me came alive in my understanding. The following day was spent just exploring this revelation. it was exciting matching it up with all that I knew concerning the word of God and it was amazing. JESUS IS THE VEIL.
…..I became like a bystander in my own body
I was ready to be filled I had no doubt that I would be filled. I was first at church that evening I was patiently and anxiously waiting for the church service to start. There was a peace and a joy that I still can’t explain that I would be filled that night. When the time came and they took us into the back room, as usual, to prepare us to enter the main sanctuary before they could finish teaching things went crazy we were all over the place praising God speaking in tongues shouting falling over, falling on top of each other in the little room.
By the time they got us into the main hall of the church everything was crazy. All I know was that I was there worshipping God filled with joy and amazement. At one point I remember saying to myself ok stop now, but I couldn’t. My mouth speaking words I did not know. I became much like a bystander in my own body, I was just calmly there observing things happening with me and in m. I was not in control and loving it. Awesome, it was just awesome. I now have the Gift, the gift of the Holy Spirit I remember thinking I need to get to know Him.
…..your eternal life is hinged on how you believe Jesus.
One lasting effect of that experience for me is that I had a visual concept that related to me the work of Jesus Christ on my behalf. He was that veil that stood between me and God the Father. I could approach God. I could be in God’s presence of this veil with all of my confessions and repenting I could not get to God, to have communion with Him. Because of my sinful nature, I need this veil, I need this coverage. Jesus is my veil, Jesus is my covering. I hope as you read this that God will reveal the person of Jesus to you in a way that is so pivotal that you will never doubt the wondrous power of who he is. I believe that God can and will speak to you in a way that is meaningful and profound to you. Knowing that your eternal life is hinged on how you believe Jesus.
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