For many years I sought for the baptism in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking with other tongues. I’ve probably been seeking for about 4 years before I received it. Now let me tell you how I received it. May this encourage you to keep the faith and to “keep on casting your bread upon the waters” even though the promise hasn’t been fulfilled because it may be “after many days.”
I’m not sure exactly how old I was when I began seeking for the baptism in the Holy Spirit but I think I was around the age of 6. A lot of things happened during the 6th year of my life. My baby brother, Elijah (who is not a baby anymore) was born on March 30. We spent almost all of that fall filming Vision of Truth’s only full length film, “A Season of Miracles.” I had the role of Brandon, a young Christian boy who somewhat inspires Chloe, his father’s employer, to become more open to the Gospel. When I was 6 1/2 , I had my 3rd year anniversary of being save. Also when I was about 6, I began preaching some, if I remember correctly. Well, that was also around the time I began seeking to be filled.
First of all, some may ask, “What does it mean to be baptized or filled with the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking with other tongues?” Jesus said it was “power”. Jesus promised He would send His disciples a comforter. That comforter that He was speaking of was the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God, just in a different form, so to speak. He is the Spirit of God so where the Holy Ghost is the power and the presence of God is there, too. The Holy Spirit immediately enters the heart of a human being after they accept Christ as their one and only Saviour. Being filled is like you being the Holy Spirit while the Holy Spirit is in you. It is like His might, but yet gentle power filling you up. It is like recharging your spiritual batteries when you lose all the excitement for Jesus you might have once had. The evidence that you’ve been filled is when you begin to speak in other languages without even knowing what you’re saying. I wanted that. I wanted the Power of God to reign more supremely in my life.
I remember one night I was down at the altar seeking for Him. I remember I felt something. It felt like something going quickly from the top of my head way down to my feet. I believe that was the Holy Spirit moving on me. I didn’t speak in tongues but I believe if I had yielded, rather than worrying about how to yield, I could have been filled that night.
I continued seeking. I remember when we went to Easter Camp-meeting down at Baton Rouge one spring, probably spring 2012. Normally, “Holy Spirit Night” took place on the Saturday night of Camp-meeting and someone would preach on the Holy Spirit and we would pray for people to get filled. Well, we had planned to leave the same day Holy Spirit Night was to take place. The Thursday night before, Donnie Swaggart preached on the Holy Spirit. I remember as he opened the altars for people to seek the face of God he said that he knew it wasn’t Holy Spirit Night yet but he felt God had laid on his heart to preach it to those, like us, who might have to leave early. Many people got filled that night but not me. I felt like God was convicting me. I felt like he was telling me, “Look, here’s your chance.” I don’t know why but I let my flesh get in the way and did not seek for it.
It was only a month after that when Josh Rosenstern, one of the ministers from Family Worship Center (which Donnie Swaggart co-pastored), came to preach a revival at our church. He preached on the Holy Spirit one night. Nobody came to the altar when he gave the altar call so he asked everyone to stand by the altar. This made me much more comfortable. I remember I was standing right in between my Uncle Jimmy and our church’s youth pastor Odell Payne. I also remember raising my hand and I remember the tears I shed as I asked God to fill me. Unlike the former story, I was open and I was ready to receive it but I still didn’t. I remember after service we went to play with our cousin Callie (Jimmy’s daughter) while Mommy and Daddy took Josh to the hotel. After Mommy and Daddy picked us up from Jimmy and Callie’s, they told me that they had told Josh that I had been seeking and that he said he believed I would receive very soon.
In late 2012, Wayne Voss, a pastor from Greenwood, MS, came to preach a revival at our church. Of course, he preached on the Holy Spirit one of those nights. As he closed he asked that everyone bow their head and close their eyes. Then he asked if anyone would like to be filled. I knew I couldn’t lie, so I raised my hand. Afterwards, he asked everyone who raised their hands to come to the altar. I didn’t go. Once again, I let my flesh get in the way.
After all this, I continued seeking but decided to wait until it was God’s time. I knew that Daddy was preaching on the Holy Spirit on Sunday night, January 20, 2013. He usually preaches on Sunday morning but occasionally he preaches on Sunday nights. I remember telling God, “If tonight’s the night, okay then, but if not, that’s okay too.” Odell Payne’s son was the only person who went to the altar if I remember correctly. I remember sitting in my spot on the front row seeking God. I remember it literally felt like it was coming from my belly. I opened my mouth and words I’ve never heard before began flowing from my mouth. Finally, it had happened. I was so happy that when I took my beagle, Snoopy, out in our backyard after church that night, I danced while holding his leash.
After that, I understood the Word of God better than ever before. It seemed like all of a sudden, I would just understand something better. Like for example: Satan will always try to attack the believer. I already knew that but it was like the Holy Spirit emphasized on the always part.
I hope this testimony has inspired or encouraged you. Ecclesiastes 11:1 says “Cast your bread upon the waters, for you shall find after many days.” The infilling of the believer with the Holy Spirit, or anything God has promised you, can be represented by the bread. The bread can also represent faith. God told us through King Solomon, the writer of Ecclesiastes, that if we put our faith in the Cross our promise will be fulfilled though it may be possibly be after “many days.” I pray this will encourage you to keep seeking for God’s promise in your life.