There was a strong desire from godly believers, people that I knew well, that I would receive the gift of tongues and the experience of the “second blessing”. These people were friends and were very keen for me to receive the gift of tongues to the point that it became almost very forceful. I had more hands on my head that I could count and my neck and shoulders were stiff. That experience really put me off, and I was already put off by my experience going to church with my granny. (They are still friends, I hope!)
I remember that at the time to be baptised with the Holy Spirit meant that you were to receive the gift of tongues, as a sign. I do not believe that this is the correct way of interpreting the Baptism of the Spirit nor the gift of tongues.
That experience led me to become rigid in my view of Scriptures, and I looked with suspicion everything that was out of the ordinary.
Ana Maria was a young Chilean girl, who joined the Ship Logos 2 the same time as I. She was different, there was something her so beautiful and powerful. Ana Maria was a miracle girl she was alive only by the grace of God, she experienced healing through the ministry Yiyi Avila, a powerful Puertorican Revivalist.
Ana Maria had something that I did not have. Many times she said to me “I am praying for you” and every time I had to translate or speak, I always asked her to back me up in prayer. She once told me that she wakened up at 4 am to pray, and when I asked her what for she said, “I don’t know I was praying in the spirit”. I asked her what she meant, and she looked at me and told me that “I was praying in tongues.”
I could not believe what I heard, I had to fight really hard my judgmentalism. I think Ana Maria saw in me a gap that only God was able to fill. Ana Maria went to be with the Lord far too soon.
We were in Colombia, Barranquilla, visiting a small local church. We were invited to lead the service and to speak about ship ministry. I don’t remember much, but what I do remember is that the worship was very different from what I used to. We were worshipping at the tune of Salsa music.
Everyone was dancing to the Lord and singing, and I think I was the only one still. It was so hard for me, Salsa is a very sensual dance that I had danced before in some places… but now this music being used to worship was hard to take, my judgemental level rocketed. But everyone was so happy, joyful, tearful and I was not. Something was missing even though my legs began to move at the sound and rhythm of the music I was at war with myself. So by faith, I decided to join in, I took my first step, and I opened my mouth to sing only to hear the sound of another language that came out from my mouth! God broke in me my religious judgementalism, my pharisaic mentality, and He used something that I considered worldly to show me grace.
I did not ask for the gift of tongues, I believe that other people prayed for me to have it, but ultimately it is a gift, given by the Spirit and “…In the same way, no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.” (1 Corinthians 2:11 NIV) the Spirit knows the mind of God, and we have the grace of having the mind of Christ.
Seek His Presence!