I was recently asked about if I have the gift of tongues and whether I believe this gift is for today.
I believe this gift is very personal, Paul, in 1 Corthinians 14, said “For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his spirit.” (1 Corinthians 14:2 NIV) I also believe what Paul says in Corinthians 12 speaks of other types of this gift, and one example of it is found in Acts 2. However, this particular gift (1 Cor.14) was given by the Spirit so that we can grow in deeper intimacy with the Lord.
My journey of faith started before I was born, it was a family affair. It was during my teens that I experienced a powerful encounter with the Holy Spirit. This took place at the end of a Sunday evening service in the Church that became my family, The Missionary Reformed Presbyterian Church. At the time of my encounter, our church was experiencing revival.
When a church is experiencing renewal from the Holy Spirit, there are going to be blessings that will encourage our faith. To see our youth group triple because young kids were coming to faith was something beautiful to watch.
But other experiences will stretch us and make us wonder. For me the gift of tongues was one of them, it was a mystery, strange and something that I was so not keen on.
As a young boy going to church with my granny, which was always fun, I did not understand why there were people during the church that spoke in a different language than mine, something that it sounded like German mixed with Chinese and Italian all into one at the same time. It didn’t make any sense to me. So after my encounter with the Holy Spirit, I made sure that I was not going to have the gift of tongues, I did not see myself saying unintelligible things.
Experiences are powerful lenses with the capacity to reinforce a truth or blind us to it.
Paul wrote that “…In the same way, no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.” (1 Corinthians 2:11 NIV). I am challenged by these words. I want to know the thoughts of God, but I fought the Spirit regarding the gift of tongue, it was foolish of me. I was missing out on blessings that God wanted me to have. My ignorance and my experience led me to judgmentalism.
Are you less than a Christian because you don’t have it? NO, you are not, it is gift a mystical one!
I know of many profound and spiritual people who don’t have this gift, but they know who they are in Christ. I also know a lot of others that they have the gift of tongues and are not walking in the faith, wonder!!
It is a gift, like any other gift they are given to us regardless of our character! (Have fun with that one!!)
How did I receive it? Read my next blog, this is already far too long!