Pursuing The Baptism in the Holy Spirit
I remember it like it was yesterday (even though it was over twenty-five years ago…how did that happen?). I was a freshman at Bible College. For years growing up, my mom would drag me to the altar every time there was an altar call for the baptism in the Holy Spirit. Struggling a bit with rebellion at this time of my life, I only went because she made me, and I did it with a defiant attitude. Of course, I was never filled seeking this way.
As I got older, I began honestly going forward wanting it, and the first few times, I didn’t receive it. Then a few weeks into my first year at the University of Valley Forge, they had what was called “Spiritual Enrichment” week, which meant they had evening services on top of the daily chapels. The speaker said in that day’s chapel, “Come tonight expecting the baptism in the Holy Spirit.”
I remember all day long I just knew that was the night I would be baptized. I remember walking to the service with a friend and saying, “I’m getting filled tonight.” When the altar call came, I leaped up and was one of the first to get to the altar (I always sat in the back, still do, and it took me longer to get there. Shout out to all my fellow back-row sitters!)
I remember the speaker laying hands on me, and the next thing I knew, I was flat on my back on the floor! I had been slain in the Spirit. I was lying there speaking in tongues!
Not only that, after the initial speaking in tongues, I began laughing out loud. As someone who had lived in a lot of emotional and physical pain and struggled with moodiness and depression, I guess God figured I needed a little of the joy of the Lord. I felt so happy, but more importantly, I left that service filled with the Spirit!
Why am I telling you this story? It is the responsibility of every believer to seek the baptism of the Holy Spirit. After we have received it, we are responsible for being active in our prayer language on a consistent basis.
If you want to be a legendary man of God filled with the power to do what God has called you to do, then the baptism in the Holy Spirit is essential for your life.
You might ask, “So, how do I receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit?”
Start praying and asking God for it today.
Whenever an opportunity is given to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit at a church service, a conference, or a prayer meeting, go to the altar and ask for it.
I went to the altar many times before I eventually was filled with the Holy Spirit. One of the reasons I shared my story was to encourage you that, even if you don’t receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit the first time you ask, keep seeking it. Keep going forward to the altar. Keep asking for it during your prayer time (because you can be filled with the Holy Spirit in your prayer closet as well as in a church). Don’t give up if it doesn’t happen right away.
Remember: the disciples were seeking God, waiting together in Jerusalem for the Holy Spirit. When it was God’s time (the day of Pentecost), they were filled with the Spirit a
nd empowered. Until God gave them the gift, they were obedient to their responsibility to wait in Jerusalem and pray. You can follow their example by consistently praying and asking for the baptism in the Holy Spirit.
In the meantime, as you pray, I encourage you to read Tim Enlow’s book, “Want More? Experience Greater Spiritual Intimacy and Power Through the Holy Spirit Baptism,” to learn more about the baptism in the Holy Spirit and how it will benefit your life.
Then be diligent in seeking God for His empowerment. In His time, He will give it to you.
Memory Verse: The promise (the gift of the Holy Spirit) is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call. (Acts 2:39, NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.