I’m going through a season of growth at the moment and have been asking God to reveal those things that I lack spiritually when it comes to salvation and embracing everything He has for me in Christ. I’ve been a little confused in the area of Holy Spirit baptism, because although I often feel ‘filled with the Spirit’, especially during worship, until today there hadn’t been a significant event I could recall where I could say I experienced Holy Spirit baptism.
I sent text messages to several friends yesterday asking if they had been baptised by the Holy Spirit and “Yes!” “Wow!” “It’s amazing!” were the kind of responses I got. So I felt more confused because I couldn’t recall such an event from my own walk as a Christian. I was back at that familiar place that has arisen many times during my spiritual journey where I find myself asking ‘What am I missing?”.
I met my friend Nick (not his real name) in a cafe today and we talked about many things to do with our spiritual walks and what God is doing in our lives. Nick and I had been texting about the specific issue of the Holy Spirit, and we got our Bibles out and looked at a few scriptures that were relevant to Holy Spirit baptism. I knew Nick had some experience of this as he has attended various seminars as part of the Last Reformation movement (see below).
It felt as though our conversations were leading somewhere, and after a while I suggested we go for a walk and we agreed that we would find a quiet area and then Nick would pray for me to be filled with the Holy Spirit. We made our way through busy central London to Russell Square, and found a quiet grassy area where we could pray.
I felt hopeful about what I might experience but I can’t say I had 100% confidence I was going to experience anything. This is partly because I considered that to a certain extent I already “had” the Holy Spirit, and partly because I didn’t know whether God would choose to work through Nick in order to give me a new experience.
As Nick began to pray, for the first few seconds I felt nothing, but then *WHAM* it was as though an aeroplane had flown directly over my head, I felt a wave of what could perhaps be described as fire passing through me and suddenly everything was clearer and there was peace. I wasn’t expecting that! It happened as Nick was praying for the Holy Spirit to ‘fill me up’ – I did feel filled up and wanted him to keep praying because it was an amazing feeling!
We paused for a moment to discuss what was going on and were both delighted that I had experienced something. We agreed to continue praying. Nick was intermitently speaking in tongues and urged me to open my mouth and start speaking in tongues, which I did, and it felt strong and powerful and natural. I didn’t want this experience to stop and wished that Nick had continued asking the Spirit to ‘fill me up’ more and more, but he started praying about other things and the power halted. What can I say, Nick isn’t very experienced with this so it was a learning experience for both of us!
After a few minutes we stopped praying and started walking and talking about what had happened. I said I was so grateful to God that He had given me this experience, and I felt that now I could relate to my friends who had had similar experiences. It felt like an important step on my spiritual journey.
There is so much still to learn. In the coming months I hope to continue to grow as a Christian, learning more about what true Biblical discipleship means and living the authentic Christian life. If you resonate with this ambition and haven’t yet seen the Last Reformation movie, it is essential viewing, it changed my life and I can’t recommend it strongly enough! I’ve embedded the movie below for your convenience 🙂