This is such a complex subject that I had to make it it’s own separate blog post. I failed miserably at controlling the length of the last one about Baptism.
I highly suggest reading that before this one because they pretty much go hand in hand.
Which leads me to the topic at hand… tongues.
FYI: Whenever i wrote Spirit with a capital S, I’m referring to God’s Spirit 🙂
When you are baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, and Spirit), the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, comes do dwell within you. It is by Jesus that this is made possible. He is the one that baptizes you. He is obviously not here right now so what He did was leave behind His name and the power behind that name. (Talk about He always provides!) Anyway, by His power, you receive the Holy Spirit; and by the Spirit, God speaks to you, leads you, and guides you. By the Spirit you are able to do great things here on earth, as long as you work to stir up your spirit and it’s connection with His Spirit.
It’s by God’s Spirit and His Spirit only that revered people in the Bible like Peter and Paul were able to do any kind of miracles. It’s not because they were special humans.
In Acts 14, people legitimately thought Paul [and Barnabas] were gods because they were healing people. (They didn’t catch that it was by the Spirit of God). So they were hype and rushing at them trying to sacrifice to them to the point where they had to tell them to chill out.
He even tore his shirt so they could see he was just human; not a god to be sacrificed to, praised, or prayed to (I’mma sip some tea on that one).
They were regular people, with God working in them. One of them, Peter, actually walked with Jesus. The other, Paul, never did. Yet by God’s Spirit Paul was able to do great things and was inspired by God to write most of the New Testament; more than any disciple that actually walked with Jesus. He was filled with the Spirit, and speaking in tongues is the evidence of being Spirit filled.
So you see here that it’s from the Spirit, not your pastor, not your church, not your mind, not your neighbor, but the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God.
Some people have asked, does this mean that if you don’t speak in tongues you’re not a “full” Christian? Not at all, you’re def still a Christian because you believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior; you still received salvation by His Spirit. So yes, you’re saved; but you just haven’t really stepped into your true powerful position. I mean being a proactive power filled Christian instead of a passive one that just waits to receive everything from God because you never really know what you truly have and what you can do kind of Christian.
There are Christians who pray and KNOW that what they have prayed will happen (and it does.); then there are Christians who pray and just hope God heard them, not really knowing what will still happen
There are Christians who live in fear of the devil (even though they know their God is bigger); then there are Christians who give the Chris Brown face to the devil on a daily. They know what to do when trials happen.
There are Christians who live life still not really knowing their purpose; then there are Christians who have a clear vision of the divine plan God has for their life and most importantly, they know who they are in Christ.
There are Christians who live in fear of sickness, and those who conquer it and heal others. Believe it or not the things Paul did back then, still happens today. Supernatural healing isn’t archaic.
The point of this post isn’t to put anyone down, but it’s to let people KNOW that there’s more. Some people legitimately have NO IDEA that there’s more they can have and do.
An example is in Acts 19:1-6 . It says there that Paul met disciples (so that tells you that these people were saved followers of Christ) and Paul asked them “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” They basically replied with “No, We never even heard that there was such a thing as a Holy Spirit”. From back then until now, there are some people who still don’t know this as well. It isn’t new.
They told him that they did John’ Baptism and Paul replied with alright great and that’s awesome, but you need to also be Baptized by Jesus.
Listen, I’m not saying you walk around naïve and arrogant because this thing called life is NOT easy and this world we live in is NOT kind. It’s the devil’s playground. You’re not arrogant but you are confident without a doubt in the God that is backing you up to overcome.
That Godfidence though....
There are Common Misunderstandings that people have about speaking in tongues (I was more than 100% guilty of this at one time. I’m not sharing anything I haven’t thought myself and y’all know I only have my experience to share.)
This is probably the biggest one. I think the root cause behind this misconception is misunderstanding behind the whole “gift” concept. I think people misunderstand the “9 Spiritual gifts” that the Holy Spirit gives you (found in 1st Corinthians 12) and the “gift” of speaking in tongues.
Speaking in tongues is a gift in the sense that it’s free; meaning all you have to do is ASK to receive it (and believe of course) But Dassit! That “special gift” that people say only “special” people get is the gift of speaking in DIFFERENT tongues. Literally. Speaking different languages; like Spanish, French, German, etc. There are some people who have never learned English, but find themselves miraculously speaking and writing it as the Spirit enabled them. (This happened in my church before). There are also accounts of Pastors who go to different countries to preach and don’t speak that country’s language at all and somehow the Holy Spirit enables them to communicate. THAT’S what people unknowingly refer to when they say “oh it’s a special gift”.
But the (free) gift of speaking in tongues is for everyone because we are ALL saved by the same Spirit. I am, you are, Bishop TD Jakes, the pastor at your church, the first lady of the church with the pressed suit, the Sunday school teacher and the kids, Joel Olsteen, Sister Shirleen, and the church van driver. It belongs to EVERYONE in every seat, in every aisle, not just at the pulpit. God doesn’t love anyone of His kids anymore than the next. He so loved the WORLD (all of us) that He gave his only Son and saved us all in the same way.
Another misconception. I think the root cause of this one is probably from standing in a crowd of people that are very emotional; crying, and what not and falling out. You turn around and determine they must be really feeling the Sprit and that’s what causing them to do it. I think people mix up emotions and Spirit. I have been very overwhelmed by the Spirit at times but that’s not what is causing me to cry. It’s my sense of feeling overwhelmed, aka my emotions that’s causing me to cry. I hope that makes sense. Sometimes I feel like people think they have to be in this crying, screaming, emotional state before they speak in tongues. No, you just don’t know what that person next to you has been through. We don’t know each other’s stories.
There’s a very fine line that sometimes overlaps with a spiritual feeling and an emotional feeling in my opinion.
When you speak in tongues, you are praying with your spirit man,your inner being, your heart, your true self not your flesh and not your mind. Just like you can start and stop praying with your mind, you can start and stop praying with your spirit. A lot of people misunderstand this and get turned off when they see someone speak in tongues then go in and out of English. It’s the same concept. Just to be clear, you are ENABLED by the Spirit to do it but you are not CONTROLLED. It is within you; YOU enable it. (We’ll discuss later)
Well, I just showed you that it is so that takes care of that.
There are a lot of Christians who believe everything they read about the Bible, skip the tongues part for whatever reason, and then resume the rest. Nah.
Speaking in tongues is another way of saying praying in the spirit. When you pray or speak in tongues, it is your spirit that is praying. Remember that we are beings with three parts. Our TRUE self, our spiritual self, our soul (our intellect and emotions), all encapsulated in the third part, a physical body.
When you pray in your “understanding” aka the language you understand, it is your mind praying or the soul aspect of you, but when you pray in tongues or pray in your spirit, it is your spirit praying.
When you pray in your spirit it is SUPER beneficial. Here is how prayer works. (I plan on doing an in depth blog later) In the meantime, the general process of prayer is this; when you pray in your understanding, God hears you, but so can the devil. Therefore he knows where to start resisting you.
In Daniel chapter 10, the angel who God sent with the answer of Daniel’s prayer said “Since the first day…your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom (the devil and his crew) resisted me twenty-one days.”
(Random fact: This is that 21 day fast people go on every New Year. Daniel prayed and fasted for 21 days because that’s how long the devil was resisting the answer to his prayer.)
When you pray in the spirit, however, the devil has no understanding. Also, your spirit is directly communicating with the Holy Spirit, so its like direct direct access!</p> <p>Lastly, when you pray in tongues you are praying the perfect will of God because you are doing it by the spirit and not the flesh. (This is personally what I love most about it) When we pray in our flesh our prayer may sometimes just be centered on our will, but the Spirit prays in accordance with the will of God. And who doesn't want His perfect will?<br />
This is an example of what I mean when I say the Spirit makes life a little easier. Instead of staying up worrying, wondering, crying, pleading God, what is your will? Pray in the Spirit and you’ll be ensured that you’re praying according to His will. Now I’m not saying you’ll get your answer right then and there, but you know that you are on the right track for it being revealed to you a lot faster.
Lol. He wasn’t throwing shade, he was really grateful because he knew the benefit of it…if he is saying this, then clearly, there’s a benefit to it.
Romans 8:26 goes in a little more depth about all of it, so I encourage you to read that for more because the struggle to control the length of this post is already too real.
Let me just start by saying that the biggest opposition to this will be your mind. Well, it’s the devil, but the number one gateway that he uses to getting you all messed up about it is your mind.
If you didn’t know, your mind and your spirit go at war and battle each other all the time. In Romans 7:21-23 Paul talks about the battle of his inner being (aka his heart aka his spirit) and his mind
The minute you decide that you want something spiritual, here comes the hating devil bringing stuff up to our mind talking about “mmm hmmm are you sure? But what if? You’re not even a real Christian, what if nothing happens? All the way up to “Remember that time in band camp?”
It’s the devil doing and reminding you of ANYTHING he can to keep you from stepping into something he knows is beneficial, so you can stay passive and unaware, of even worse, misinformed. But your desire has to be bigger than your doubts.
and that person would be Jesus. We now know that Jesus is the one that baptizes you with the Holy Spirit. If you want something from someone, you gotta know who to ask right? Don’t just throw out spiritual words. Scripture is intentional. If it’s written that Jesus does it, then that is who you ask.
Disclaimer* I am about keeping everything SCRIPTURAL- so the fact that Paul laid hands and prayed for people to receive FROM JESUS, I would suggest that doing it this way. Having a true Spirit filled man or woman of God who has the understanding, lay hands on you to receive. Now if you go to a church that doesn’t do this and this is something you truly desire, all I’ll say is your loyalty is to God and not the building you call church…*sips tea lol but seriously, find someone; remember it doesn’t HAVE to be a pastor because it’s not the physical person doing it, it’s Jesus. The person has to be legit though. We don’t want no Reverand Lonnie Loves. lol
I suggest actually opening up the Bible, reading about it, listening about it, talking about , asking questions, etc. (Feel free to ask me even in that contact, and I’ll do my best to help!) but Get understanding.
Hosea 4:6- my people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge.
No one is open to anything they don’t have understanding of.
If you have done the previous three then just Relax and believe Jesus will do it. Don’t put anything on anyone or yourself. Stop trying to act right, stand right, and look right in front of people.
Tell your Mind to shut up. Lol. At this point, lets say you’ve done numbers 1-4. The person laying hands on you is praying. At this point the devil is still fighting (that man doesn’t give up). Here he goes with ” mm hmmm is the person praying for you even legit, what if something ba”- Shut.It.Up.
This sounds like common sense, but to be honest, in the middle of the warring of your mind, you worrying, and the people around you, your mouth is closed. It sounds cliché, but at some point you gotta just let go, relax and ACTUALLY open your mouth. YOU decide to open your mouth. Jesus is not going to descend on a cloud and part your lips. Lol.
Whatever comes out comes out.
Here is the hard part. It may be a little blerp or a lot of groanings, but remember that thing called faith? You have to operate in faith. You operate in the faith that whatever comes out; it is what it is. It doesn’t have to sound perfect or the way you thought or as much as that lady that’s always falling out in church. You have faith that as you do this, God is hearing you and seeing you (which He does), but you have to believe it and operate in that. Don’t feel like you have to be super emotional for it to be right. Some people are and some aren’t. It most definitely CAN be a very emotional experience but it doesn’t mean it always is. Lastly, you gotta build it up. There was a time where I literally couldn’t pray past like 1 minute lol. Then it was 5, then 10, 30, an hr, etc. You train your spirit for growth. (I talked about it in my first post here.)
I’m gonna end by sharing a little bit of my own story of the first time I spoke in tongues. I’m almost reluctant to say where it was. Okay not almost, I am, so I won’t lol
Anyway, I remember that during that time period I was VERY confused about tongues. I wasn’t spending time to traditionally pray about it , but I remember that every single day I’d be asking God within myself, what is this? Mind you, I’m a saved Christian. I thought it was weird, “only for special people”, “not for me” , and “maybe when you want me to get it God that’s when I will”. Probably ALL the same things everyone has ever said, I’m sure of it. I guess I was saying “God will give it to me when He wants to” outwardly, but subconsciously all these questions meant I was curious and low key wanted it myself. I didn’t know it was on ME and not on HIM.
We take so much responsibility for every other aspect of our lives. When we wanna get smarter and more “woke”, we read books. When want to get healthier, we eat healthy; we don’t expect anyone to eat our veggies for us. But when we want to grow spiritually? That one? We are chillin waiting on God to do it for us. And the whole time He sitting up in heaven like..
Back to my story! So for days straight I was saying these things to myself and there came a day when a group of people were getting baptized. I said I wanted to be baptized as well. Everyone went it one by one and people were having what looked like amazing spiritual experiences and I was just standing there; waiting my turn and TERRIFIED. All I kept thinking was “I’m going to be the one who gets in there and nothing happens.”
Then it was my turn; after being baptized the pastors there were praying; I had never met them but I knew of them and knew they were two legit women. As I got dipped in the water and lifted up, they started praying. I was so busy in my mind literally thinking “what if nothing happens” that I didn’t even realize that one of them was praying in tongues. I had no idea what she was talking about; again my mind was busy. That’s when I realized the other one was speaking English…I was confused for a second because she wasn’t speaking like she was speaking to me, then I heard her say “Thus says the Lord.” I knew enough to be like “oh shoot she is interpreting and prophesying right now.” (that’s an “actual gift”) Then I started quieting my mind and paying attention. When I tell you the words that were said were things I have NEVER shared with anyone before, MAN! I got so overwhelmed and busted out crying. I was like wow. I mean I had always been a Christian but in that moment I was like “Wow God you really are legit!, this tongues thing is really legit.”
THAT’S when I decided to shut off my mind. I remember thinking to myself “I’m gonna do it.” I just relaxed and opened my mouth.
Then I cried some more. Lol. I was mainly crying because of being overwhelmed by what was said about me , my realization in that moment that this tongues thing is legit, and the fact that I’m a cry baby.
That was just MY experience. I also remember some other people getting baptized after me. The person after me was not emotional; he didn’t cry, any of that. But that was His experience. His was his, and mine was mine, no one’s was better. All I have is mine to share it with you.