I am a analytical type person. Skeptical when it comes to things of faith (unfortunately). I was raised as a catholic (although we rarely attended church). I met my wife about five years ago (in April) and started going to her Pentecostal church. It was uncomfortable at first when they had altar calls (where they did call on us to pray for Jesus’ intervention), because of the strange things that I observed. Mainly the crying and yelling perplexed me (such a deviation from my tranquil and ordered services of Catholic service). And the length! A service would last anywhere from an hour to two and a half hours! We could count on being out of the door on the dot in Catholic church!
Anyway to the point. Yesterday (02-04-01) I was praying (kneeling up front of the church) to Jesus and asking for clarity of thought and the baptism of the holy ghost (spirit) if that is what I needed. I also prayed for understanding of the experience since it weighed heavily on me that I never had felt anything in church or while praying to Jesus. I have felt in the past twinges of guilt or such when making bad decisions but I had always attributed it to my own morality. While praying others prayed with me so that I might understand and be filled with the Holy Ghost (as in Pentecost). At first I felt nothing (as I had in the past 4 years in their church), when all of a sudden I felt an energy entering me, my lips started stammering (sorry for using the bible description but it fits) and I felt this overwhelming wellness which is indescribable (it was better than any high from alcohol any other earthly thing). Then I felt my body moving and my mouth making sounds (don’t know or recall what was coming out of it) that I would never do while in control of myself (as I am reserved in social events). As the experience peaked my body felt heavy and I was without strength, I could not move my arms and I laid there experiencing the most profound event in my life. At that moment the emotions washed over me… I felt happy and remorseful at the same time. Happy to have had the experience (that Jesus actually acknowledged me personally) and sad that I ever doubted in the first place, and I wept (something else that I would never do in public).
Do I still think it is necessary for salvation? I don’t know. I will have to pray about that one. But as for me… It surely didn’t hurt. It turned this doubting Thomas into a full-fledged believer and wouldn’t trade the experience for any amount of money or treasure. It has profoundly changed my outlook on life and I feel that it was necessary for me (the experience) for me to enter into the next level of relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ.
I wanted to share this with you, feel free to post it on your website (if you wish), feel free to comment it or debate, or question me. I would be happy to entertain your thoughts on this matter or any other subject in the Bible.
Your fellow servant in Christ,