the disposition that we abhor, but many still keep - Who exalt themselves will be humbled - Published by John Knox+

Why I Pray In Tongues So Much published by
WARNING: This post is strictly devoted to the topic of speaking in tongues.
WARNING: This post is strictly devoted to the topic of speaking in tongues. If this subject upsets or offends you, please move to another blog. I do not want to offend anyone.

I was raised in a Presbyterian church. I got saved on a Presbyterian Church Youth Work trip to New Mexico in 1969. The first and only thing I knew about the God who had just touched my life was what I read in 1 John in the days after my experience. I knew God was love and that I was to love those He had surrounded me with.

I was sixteen at the time and really craved having a girlfriend. I asked the Lord many times if it was the right time. He blessed me with someone a year younger than I was and as much of a novice in the boy/girl thing as I was. My girlfriend's sister who was a year older and whom I also knew for she went to my high school left the church youth group and started attending a Bible study group with a bunch of hippies. All anyone knew about this group was that supposedly they sat around in a house smoking dope and studying the Bible.

In December of 1969 my girlfriend's sister decided to bring about ten of her new friends to our Sunday night youth fellowship under the pretense of their leader playing the guitar and singing nice Christian songs. They all showed up with their long hair and hippie clothes and smelling like smoke. But, they were nice, and manifested more genuine love than anyone in my group.

Their leader, Donnie, had hair down to the base of his back and eyes that seemed to see right through you. After I introduced everyone to each other (I was the coordinator of the group) I turned things over to Donnie to play a couple of songs. He brought up his partner, Tommy, and together they sang for the next 40 minutes. When they were done, the normally laid back kids in the group stood up and yelled and clapped and screamed for more. I did exactly as they did.

They sang another song and before I could do anything Donnie started preaching. Oh my, did he preach. He spoke of things none of us had ever heard of. He spoke of things from the Bible that none of knew were in there. The last thing Donnie spoke about was speaking in tongues. I honestly had never heard of the thing. Hey, I was an almost 17 year old kid who had just learned about God 4 months earlier.

When the fellowship was over, everyone ran up to Donnie and Tommy wanting autographs. They were looked upon as rock stars because of their music. Instead of signing things they gently talked more about the things spoken of earlier. I was getting a little irritated because these guys were hogging all the attention. I noticed my girlfriend was missing and went looking for her. I finally found her in a room with her sister and three other girls from Donnie's group. They were sitting on the floor speaking in a language I could not understand. I shut the door and left perplexed.

A short time later the group I had just seen all came up to me more excited than any people I had ever seen on earth. My girlfriend was aglow like Moses coming down from the mountain. I had never seen her so happy. Her smile lit up the whole church. I asked what on earth went on in that room. They all grabbed me and told me it was my time to find out.

These five girls pretty much dragged me into a room and we sat on the floor while one of them read Bible verses about speaking in tongues. Then she instructed me as to what to do. She told me that Jesus had told the disciples after the resurrection to breathe in and receive the Holy Spirit. She told me to start breathing in, slow and deep breaths and all the while thank God for the gift of Holy Spirit and ability to manifest it through speaking in tongues. We did this for what seemed like hours, but actually only a few minutes.

I did as I was told and I kept breathing in and taking deep breaths thanking God for filling me to overflowing with the gift of Holy Spirit. Earlier she had instructed me that at the duly appointed time I was to move my mouth and my lips. I did that, but the Holy Spirit gave the utterance. After a long period of breathing in, she suddenly said to me "Now speak in tongues" and lo and behold I did along with the others in the room. We sat in there speaking in tongues together for a good ten minutes. It felt so wonderful and I felt an inner excitement I had never experienced in my young life. I was so filled with joy I just wanted cry.

When we finished I asked the girl who had "led me into tongues" what speaking in tongues was good for. She said to do when I felt happy and wanted to thank God for feeling that way. That night I went home and spoke in tongues for an hour for I was happy. I didn't speak in tongues again for 10 months after that for I was never happy like that again.

Ten months later I received more instruction on tongues and learned that by speaking in tongues you glorify God and worship Him spiritually. In October of 1970 I really spoke in tongues and have done so MUCH ever since. I can conceive of not having a Bible to read and still stay in fellowship with God. I can conceive not having any believers around and still being in fellowship with God. I cannot conceive not being able to speak in tongues and be alive.

If you have read any of my postings you know I have had my fair share of problems in this life. I have had disasters in marriages, finances and health. I have thought of ending this life and wished at times it would end when things were at their worst. I have been despised, rejected, used and abused by believers and unbelievers alike. I have spent years crawling on my belly spiritually trying to stay alive and spent prolonged periods in the depths of the darkest night of the soul.

Yet, I am still here and stronger than I was 35 years ago. How can that be? There are many reasons, but I am not ashamed to tell everyone the main reason I have been able to STAND no matter what life and the enemy threw at me. The only reason I am here typing this post is because I speak in tongues more than I can possibly keep track of. Speaking in tongues has kept me alive, healed me, blessed me and answered prayers for me. Speaking in tongues has electrified me, energized me and allowed me to overcome all the junk this life has put in my way.

Of all the things my God has blessed me with, I thank Him most for the ability to speak in tongues and to speak in tongues MUCH. Two years ago drove all over this country trying to help people. I would drive for ten hours and not even think about it. Most of the time I would listen to instrumental worship music and sing in tongues for hours and hours. People would always ask me why I barely had any voice left when I got to wherever I was going. I love to speak in tongues and gladly do it two to four hours per day.

If you don't speak in tongues and want to; find someone who does and knows how to help you do it. Or, just follow the instructions I gave earlier and allow God to lead you into tongues or as someone posted today to "hijack my tongue". I love that. Once you speak in tongues you are baptized in the Holy Spirit and your spiritual life will become new and your worship experience will define AWESOME.

I never speak in tongues when anyone else is around. It is between me and God. Yes, I used to be in a group that had tongues with interpretation at worship services, and I do believe in interpretation of tongues when in an assembly. But, speaking in tongues is for you to worship, magnify and bless God more than anything else. It is also perfect intercession and other things. But, always remember that when you speak in tongues, you are blessing the Father's heart a billion times more than just saying the words "Thank You", for when you speak in tongues you are giving thanks well.

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Kirk M is a retired minister living with his wife and animals in rural eastern Missouri
You can find out more about kirk on his profile page.

Published: Apr 06 2008 07:33:36pm

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Erin Cochran (@throughfaith)

wow, I too was raised Presbyterian. When I was in my early twenties our pastor (Baptist at that time) preached about having a prayer language and I prayed to receive it and did. I always pray that way. Later in my early thirties I attended an AG church with a friend of mine, and when they all spoke in tongues, so did I. It just happened. My friend that I had known since I was a child, stood staring at me and then proceeded to interpret what I had said. Now I go to a Wesleyan church and the first conversation I had with our pastor, I told him I had a prayer language and he proceeded to give me an hour long sermon about speaking in tongues. I don't know why, but when I pray in English, I'm left feeling like I didn't pray enough and when I pray in my prayer language, I'm just filled and contented. It gives me joy and peace. It's great to know there are others out there like me ... blessings, erin

T Sia (@doulos)

I came from one of the most traditional of Church backgrounds where I did not receive much teaching about the gifts of the Spirit. I was religiously pious, observed all rites and necessary sacraments and I was self-righteous and prideful - there is no surer way to oppose God than to be prideful! Later, I went through a bad patch called life and fell away for a few years. One day He called me back through a convicting message I heard on the internet. For the first time, I truly knew grace and was hungry again for God. But this time, my search was for Him and not the religion that left me empty.

I was led to a Pentecostal church where all of my religiousness began to be peeled away by convictions and then one day the preacher spoke about the Holy Spirit and made an altar call for those who wanted to be baptised in Spirit. I was the first to reach the altar (and I had never before responded to an altar call). A pastor prayed with me and for a while I was resisting but as I began to let go and submit to the Spirit, I felt wind upon me. My body began to shake, my lips quivered and my jaws chattered. Remembering at this point that the spirit of the prophet is subject to the prophet (1 Corinthians 14:32), I tried to take control and was relieved I could. Even in gifting us, God leaves our free will intact... I was sure then that it was God and I didn't want to control it because it was a wonderful washing over of peace and love. As I submitted to it again, I began to speak in tongues and was slain by the Spirit (again a first for me). I don't know how long I was slain for but I got up still shaking and since then I've spoken in tongues. I sing in tongues and pray in tongues a lot.

As distinguished by tchable, the tongues that we speak is a personal language of edification (1 Cor 14:4) that is spoken directly to God (1 Cor 14:2) and is often an uttered intercession of the Spirit for us (Romans 8:26). It is not the same as tongues of prophecy where interpretation is required.

Previously, I was made to understand that there is no tangible distinction between the baptism of the Spirit and water baptism. However the experience I had indicates otherwise. I now understand that the Holy Spirit is certainly "with" every Christian but is not "in" us until we are baptised in the Spirit and receive Him in us. They are two distinct experiences of the Holy Spirit. Jesus told his disciples in John 14:17: "the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells WITH you and will be IN you." (NKJV, emphasis mine).

When I used to wonder about people speaking in tongues and didn't "get" it, I took the common positions opposing it. I searched the scriptures to be "right" and I thought my doctrine was sound because I was based on scripture but all I had done was to use the parts of scripture that justified my position to refuse the Spirit - I refused to come to God. I thought I was opposing misled people with a different doctrine but I was really opposing God Himself - and that's sin of course... Now having experienced it myself, I am humbled and repentant and cannot refute the experience of baptism of the Holy Spirit.

I must also add that being baptised in the Spirit doesn't make someone a "better" Christian but it does empower the Christian walk. And having any gifts of the Spirit is not a sign of God endorsing either the person or the ministry. The gifts are given by grace and cannot be earned. The gifts are for service to the body and receiving them is a blessing of subservience and surrender to Him.

Christians who speak in tongues or demonstrate gifts shouldn't flaunt it to those who don't but instead we are to encourage others to seek the gifts by first seeking God. We are encouraged to seek the gifts not for power (that's witchcraft) but because it is an empowerment of servanthood to our brothers and sisters in Christ. The purpose of the gifts is to serve. Having the gifts puts us in a position of servitude and humility, not superiority. Ultimately, the Holy Spirit leads us to Jesus and The Father and enables us to help others do the same. He helps us draw close to God and keep us holy. How could we ever not want that?

Being non-denominational, I think CB is an ideal forum to dispel the abundant misunderstanding of tongues and gifts of the Spirit. We can be open with each other and discuss doctrinal standpoints without being disagreeable. And I hope this discussion will go on...

Thank you B2Y for another wonderful post and for the boldness to put out the posts that needs to be posted! ... Keep sharing! :)

Martie Du Preez (@shawmane)

WHAT A WONDERFUL BLOG ENTRY! If I could ask for ONE thing, it would be for the TRUTH to be taught to all of men - without them feeling offended. I grew up in Church, but no one ever taught me that everything I read in the Bible, actually exists TODAY as well! My mother still turns her head away when I tell her about Benny Hinn and his crusades and all the miracles I see around me. I see her spiritual blindness and I can only pray to God that He would open her eyes and ears in good time. I personally see the gift of tongues as a miracle because it does not involve your mind. You cannot THINK it or UNDERSTAND it! It is ONLY by His Spirit that we can experience this wonderful gift. I received my "language" word for word in 2002. Today I have a whole sentence and it excites me to see and hear others grow in the Spirit! My daughter is 17 years old and she received her gift of tongues when she was 15 years old. Thank you for sharing this with others. Love in Christ.

John B. Abela+ (@abelajohnb)

completly-off-topic-here: this is your 150th public blog entry... congratz mate!

Lisa Forrest (@lmforrest)

Thanks for your wonderful blog! I have had several occasions where the heavenly language just came rushing out like steam from a kettle. This has surprised me and because of my being unsure about it, I don't consciously do it, yet it pops out nonetheless. Haven't had it happen for over a year until a week and a half ago and right after my shower, bam, there is was and it went on for about 15 minutes. I felt so light and refreshed by it yet still a little confused so I prayed about it and let it go. Seems your blog has answered my prayer and now I will no longer fear this but rather embrace it. Only once did it happen in front of people and that was while I was in jail, and in jail, you are never completely alone so that makes sense. Peace to You!

K Reynolds+ (@kreynolds)

I received the baptism of the Holy Spirit when I was 10 years old. Truly the Holy Spirit empowers us to do things we never thought we could do and go through things we never thought we'd be able endure! In addition to praising God, often the Holy Spirit is making intercession for you as well. Last Saturday, I was battling despair as I sat at my piano. Suddenly, the Holy Spirit came down upon me and began to speak. What a healing balm to my wounded soul! The arrows the enemy sought to wound me with fell harmlessly and despair fled. I don't know how long I prayed but what a time of refreshing it was for me. The Holy Spirit can also speak when we don't know how to pray. We may not know what the issue is that is suddenly heavy upon our heart. We may not know how to express it. We may suddenly feel burdened to pray for someone but we have no idea who it is or what is afflicting them. The Holy Spirit knows however and moves upon us.

Perhaps when we get to heaven, we will get an opportunity to meet those who prayed for us even though they didn't know specifically who they were praying for. They just acted in obedience to the Holy Spirit. What a great time that will be!

Kirk M+ (@blessings2you)

Thank you for your comments. If you didn't notice my follow-up to this post, it might be worth a look. This subject will no doubt creep back into the woodwork from which it came, but before it does, I pray those who are longing to be filled to overflowing are. And those who already know the power of praying in tongues utilize it more and more.

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