I was fifteen years old, when I realized that I loved God, and wanted to serve Him. I decided to ask my dad about becoming a Nun. He told me there were many ways to serve God, and he handed me a Bible. He told me the Bible would answer all my questions about God. Some nights, I would read the Bible my dad gave to me under one of the lamp posts, near my house.
I didn’t follow through with my desire to serve God. Instead, I succumbed to peer pressure and I began to hang around with a group of godless teenagers: thereby, I also became a godless teenager. I used drugs, disobeyed my parents, ran away from home, skipped school, etc. My life “ethically” spiraled out of control.
It wasn’t until I was nineteen years old, that things started to fall into place regarding my relationship with God. It was Spring time, and I remember driving down the highway looking at all the beautiful flowers, while at the same time, I was wondering, “What could I do to feel as pretty inside as those flowers looked outside.” I felt so dirty. After I became a Christian, I realized that “dirty” feeling was the conviction of the Holy Spirit.
A few days later, I was ironing and watching the television. I was listening to Pat Robertson, the host of the 700 Club. Pat asked a question that got my attention, immediately. He asked, “Is there anyone out there who has not asked Jesus Christ to come into their heart, and to forgive their sins?” Then he extended an invitation to those in the audience and to those watching him on TV, who had not asked Jesus for forgiveness, to pray the “Prayer of Salvation” with him. I prayed. When we finished praying, Pat encouraged all those who prayed, to call somebody that they knew and/or call the 700 Club and tell them that they had just prayed the “Prayer of Salvation.”
“For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans 10:10 (NIV)
I called the 700 Club. The lady who answered the phone was happy for me. As we were wrapping up our conversation, she asked me, “Have you received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit since you believed?” I told the her, no and I asked her to mail some information to me about the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
As the days passed, I began to read my Bible, regularly. I found that I needed to be baptized in water.
Water baptism is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer’s faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Savior, the believer’s death to sin, the burial of the old life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus.
I had no church affiliation, and I didn’t know what church to call, to baptize me. I decided to open the telephone book to Churches, close my eyes and point. When I opened my eyes, my finger was on a church called: Full Gospel Fellowship. I called that church, and asked the Pastor to baptize me in water. He was happy to do so, and he told me what time to be at the church service for the baptism. When I went into the church, the people were very friendly. I was baptized and afterwards, I decided to join the church. Coincidentally, 🙂 it wasn’t very far from where I lived.
It had been several weeks since I joined my church, and after one of the services, Tina, one of the Elder’s wives asked me, if I would like to have a Ladies Bible Study in my home. I had a hunger to learn more about God and His Word, so I told her, yes. About a week later, we had the Bible Study, in my home. At the end of the Bible Study, Tina asked me, “Have you received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit?” I told her, no and she asked me, “Would you like to receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit?” I was a little embarrassed, because I didn’t know what to expect, so I declined.
After everyone went home, I began to think about Tina’s question. I came to the conclusion, that if God had more to offer me: I wanted it. I got down on my knees and asked God to baptize me with the Holy Spirit. God answered my prayer. I was so excited! I went to the telephone to call one of my friends and tell them the Holy Spirit was real. I picked up the receiver, and my legs buckled. I dropped the receiver and slid down the wall, to the floor.
After a while, I found that many of my friends weren’t as happy for me as I thought they’d be, but that didn’t slow me down. I had more “ZEAL” than wisdom and knowledge of God’s Word, and I didn’t know anything, about being led by the Holy Spirit. I began to witness for Jesus and I suffered some major bumps and bruises. Even so, “Praise God” I was able to lead some people to Jesus.
The Baptism with the Holy Spirit is a blessing from God which causes ordinary people to become extraordinarily, effective witnesses for Jesus Christ.
“For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, LORD, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Acts 1:5-8 (KJV)
By it, God equips believers today with the same power we read about in the New Testament. Since the Day of Pentecost. Please read the second chapter of Acts.
God’s plan has been to supernaturally equip every believer, so that the ministry of Jesus Christ may continue through us.
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.” John 14:12 (KJV)
His ascension into heaven:
“And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.” Acts 1:9 (KJV)
did not mean that Jesus’ ministry on earth stopped, but rather it was an essential step which released even more of His ministry. As the Head of His Church He now directs growing multitudes of Spirit-empowered men and women to carry His Gospel around the world:
“Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” Luke 24:45-49 (KJV).
The Baptism with the Holy Spirit is the impartation of this necessary power so that God’s servants can carry out their calling.
“They have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony. And they did not love their lives so as to shy away from death.” Revelation 12:11 (NIV)
“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:” Matthew 7:7 (KJV)
“The LORD says, “I was ready to respond, but no one asked for help. I was ready to be found, but no one was looking for me. I said, ‘Here I am, here I am!’ to a nation that did not call on my name.” Isaiah 65:1 (NLT)
Barnes’ Notes: God states in general that he had called another people who had not sought him, and extended the blessings of salvation to those who had been strangers to his name Isaiah 65:1. This is evidently intended to show that many of his ancient people would be rejected, and that the blessings of salvation would be extended to others, Romans 10:20.
The blessing of salvation is being extended to you, the reader. If you haven’t met Jesus Christ, and you wish to ask Jesus to forgive your sins and ask Him into your heart, please go to my blog entitled: COME TO JESUS JUST AS YOU ARE…
Jesus is ready to respond!
In † Christian Love, Susan Osten