Thursday, March 22, 2012

My Testimony of His Refreshment!


By Abraham Israel

We are all a generation of Coke, Pepsi, Sprite and Fanta consumers around the world. I am very apprehensive of the so called soft drinks health benefit and really consider it to be a junk food. I only take a couple of sips on special occasions. But I have recently found it to be refreshing so much during the heat that I drank much more than I usually take. Others whom I advised not to take much, took note of it and asked me about it. Then some how I was a little embarrassed about it and said that "in political situation we say it but do not do it." I laughed it away after that. Why I said this is to emphasize that though something may not be the best available thing at a particular time, yet we crave for it if it refreshes us in that time of our need. Yet no amount of soft drink can satisfy us in such a way that we will be able to say, "I am satisfied with what I drank, so that when ever I need, I can draw it from within." No my friends, most of those who keep on feeding junk foods get used to its lure that they start to binge on it, thus destroying their God given health.

When I was seven years old, I received Jesus Christ consciously as the Lord and Savior of my life. I saw myself as a sinner in need of the Savior and I came to realize and also understand spiritually that Jesus Christ is the one who has become a substitute for me. I saw in a vision Jesus hanging on the Cross of Calvary with a bleeding feet and hands. Blood seeping out all over His body with rashes due to the lashes that He received for my sinfulness. I saw the thorn crown on His head for all the bad thoughts of sin that controlled me. When I realized that it was for my fault and sinfulness that Jesus died, tears seethed and flowed from my eyes. Joy and peace flooded my soul as I went to sleep that night with heaven in my little heart. From that time on, I believe, the living water which Jesus supplied that day became a fountain within me, springing up into everlasting lfe. But over a period of time, the fountain measure made me crave for rivers of unlimited measure
(John 7:37-39). I have learned by experience that it is not good to just be gloriously born of the Spirit and keep waiting by sitting forth comfortably in this knowledge to enter heaven (John 3:3-6). We will become useless towards fulfilling God's purpose for our life if we do not seek further to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Here is what happened further in my life.

I was raised up in a staunch evangelical denomination that puts a good base of repentance, victory over sin and a changed life
(Heb 6:1; Rom 6:14-15; Acts 9:20-22), have unfortunately because of a lack of revelation have always discouraged people about the filling of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues (Acts 19:2). Because of this teaching all through my boyish and teenage years I have longed for something more of God without knowing that it was God that I was searching for. But instead only emptiness began to increase in me as I started to substitute the world within me to fill that God shaped void. Blaise Pascal the French Mathematician, Philosopher and Physicist, who lived a short but wonderful exemplary life from 1623-1662, have beautifully said, "There is a God shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus.” How true and profound it is!! So when I saw some gifted ministers of God ministering under the fullness of the baptism of the Spirit, our denominational people would cause fear and unnecessary doubt by pointing to their lives and then saying that they are not as good as they speak and seem to be, so these things are not of God. But I used to question myself why I am draw towards the message that they speak?

But as time went by, I totally have forgotten to focus on my relationship with God in my teen years and have grown to be very piously religious. The God shaped hole in my life grew bigger and bigger until I start to seriously think about the meaning of life. As I tried to be conformed to the world's system of thinking in order to relate to my college mates, strong bondage of slavery to sin and self took hold of me to haunt me during my Polytechnic and Engineering days. Then I wanted to live a solitary life in some foreign land and spend my life peacefully as I had lost the peace and refreshment of God's light and His Presence. God by His grace allowed a sickness to come to me that made me to rethink that I am not in control of my own life
(Psa 119:67, 71). I also realized that I could easily become a invalid if not for the mercy of God in my life (2 Sam 9:1-3, 6-8). During that time, I began to seek God through His word (Psa 119:49-50, 81, 92). Then one day I was watching a television talk show in which a well known powerful man of God along with another one were discussing about the baptism of the Spirit. I was greatly blessed by the ministry of this man of God who I used to see speak in tongues while ministering.

Those days because of being sick and down in the bed, I was in my home town. One day in that half an hour program, a aged man of God was invited for the show. He had a special anointing over his life, especially in the area of giving of the Holy Spirit with the laying of hands. When he prayed for people many received the ‘baptism of the Holy Spirit’ with the evidence of speaking with new tongues.

He was speaking in details about this tongue speaking. He discussed in the talk show that our mind should not be used and should be kept blank while trying to speak in tongues. Further he said that this tongues comes from our spirit as the Spirit of God gives us the utterance individually.

He also told about a woman believer who tried to receive new tongues for years and she prayed and prayed and nothing happened, she was also prayed over and prayed over by many many men and women of God, but to no avail. One fine day this man of God was invited to their church. And he told her that the very fact that she boasts about many men and woman of God praying over her and she in spite of it all not receiving the Baptism of the Holy Spirit with the external evidence of speaking in unknown tongues in itself shows the pride in her which God resists. So he ordered this woman to go before the altar immediately and kneel down in humility before God, and without logically reasoning with her mind, just believe and expect the prayer that God gives through tongues to come from her spirit as a external sign of the internal filling of the Holy Spirit. This man of God then said that even if she will get just one word she should by faith open her mouth and should speak it and it will come. Finally she received it when words came rushing out of her by faith which she began to speak by her own choice for the Glory of God. This encouraged me very much. That night as usual as I went to the open-terrace to pray. This was the time God directly challenged me to seek for the baptism of the Holy Spirit because of the severe depression I had during that time of my life. I simply said to God, "Lord, I heard the man of God speak today who came to the talk show of this evangelist who hosted the show, say that we must close up our logical and reasoning mind and ask God to fill us with His Spirit by faith. If what he says is real, please help me receive it." Then as I continued to pray, I prayed ‘Lord I would like to pray in tongues’, not really understanding fully that I needed the Baptism of the Holy Spirit for which God gives the tongues as a external evidence of the internal filling. Then after I finished praying like that, I felt some sort of utterance coming from my spirit up to my throat. So I opened my mouth and by faith I prayed out the utterance but kept my mind blank.

At first it was a sort of one word and repeated phrases in tongues came out. Then I grew bold and began to speak it loudly. Then tongues came flowing out of my spirit. Also I felt refreshed and edified in my mind every time I prayed in tongues, so it became a habit.

Actually God found me like he found the Samaritan woman at the well. This woman was thirsting for reality in her life and was involved in multiple relationship with men, one after the other to fill this God shaped void in her life. But it never brought satisfaction to her. Instead it made her more empty to seek for more instead of satisfying her. She even tried to be religious and it was of no use as she failed to get her void within be filled towards satisfaction in life. But finally when she met Jesus, He revealed her inner hidden pursuit for reality and satisfaction, and pointed to Himself as the solution for her thirst within. Finally she drank the living water and was satisfied. Jesus instructed her to seek for more of His Spirit in order to have a living connection with the Father in heaven, and also worship Him in spirit and in truth through the Holy Spirit who gives a supernatural language to worship and praise the Lord
(John 4:7-25; Acts 10:46; 1 Cor 14:14-18).

Then words started to increase as the habit of regularly praying in tongues for a set time each day increased more and more by faith. It started to flow out of me in various category of tongues as time passed by. The great thing that happened along with the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is that, a supernatural refreshing came upon me from within, every time I spoke to God in tongues
(1 Cor 14:2; Isa 28:11-12). To the world as usual the phenomenon of receiving and operating in the gift of the "Baptism in the Holy Spirit", with the external evidence of speaking in tongues may be mockery as it was in the day of Pentecost two thousand years ago (Acts 2:3-4, 6, 12-13). But to the spiritual people it is the most edifying and refreshing drink that satisfies them more and more increasingly in their lives (1 Cor 2:14).

I started to get more and more revelation of the deep things from the word of God after this rivers of living water started to flow out of me
(1 Cor 2:10-13). Even now I have written this testimony of mine through the refreshing touch of the Holy Spirit's river that flows out of me. I thank God that I am able to speak in tongues more and more (1 Cor 14:18), now I am satisfied and refreshed each day as I swim in the rivers of living water. If there is one thing that I am given to shout in all the world, it would be, "JESUS IS ETERNALLY SATISFYING AND REFRESHING THROUGH THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT."

My prayer to God for you is, "Lord, fill all those who read this with rivers of living water and satisfy them with the fullness of the Holy Spirit. May a holy Baptism in the Holy Sprit take place supernaturally as it had taken place for me by faith (Gal 3:14). May the supernatural language of tongues flow out of each of their spirit-man in JESUS mighty name. After that, help each one of them to discipline themselves daily to speak mysteries of their life, situation, family, Church and the whole world by faith in the language of tongues to you and as a result of it be refreshed with the oil of gladness because of your pleasing acknowledgement to answer all the prayers done through tongues, from heaven in the coming days (1 Cor 2:7, 10, 12; 14:2). Amen!"

mUcH bLeSsInGs....


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