Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Confessions of (Another) Baptist Charismatic

NOTE: I've never posted anything by a "Guest Author" but I can't help but post this one. Dr. Lynn Myers sent this to me and asked if I might post it if I found it fitting.

I confess I don't know Dr. Myers personally (alternate conclusion .. I've forgotten ... if so, I plead advanced age...), but NOTHING about this post is out of harmony with my own personal experiences, nor out of harmony with what I think God is ready, willing, and able to do, today... if and when He is willing and it will glorify Him. Hence, Dr. Myers, here y'go.


"Like many of you I grew up a cessationist, not because of any real deep study of the scripture, but because I was brought up that way.

Everyone said God could do special things nowadays, but we acted like he almost never did. We even offered all kinds of limp reasons why he quit doing miracles. We discounted any reports of miracles because they were not done in our church and denomination. Besides, they were claimed by people who were from "the other side of the tracks" ... those nutty, uneducated, wild, emotional Pentecostal people.

Then, my little son got a fatal disease, that my niece has died of and, as a physician, I had once unsuccessfully treated. There was nothing that medicine could do. Only God could save my little boy. What you do? After a careful study of the scripture, it seemed clear to me that God expects us to pray for the sick and have faith that many will recover. I sought God like never before. I sought God with all my heart and guess what? My son began to get better.

But then, a few days later, tests in my own laboratory (I am a pathologist) grew worse. My anxiety thinking of him dying was to the point of causing me pain. I could think of nothing worse. I thought of “deals” I could make with God, if he would only heal my son. I remember thinking that I would gladly trade my life for my son's.

I knew I needed the comforter ... I needed God’s Spirit. Some friends came and prayed for me. I needed God ...I was desperate. I didn’t think of theology, I thought only of my need to be touched and comforted by the Holy Spirit. Suddenly, to my complete surprise, I began to praise God and speak in a tongue I did not know.

It was more like a cry. I saw myself as never before. I saw how my sin hurts God. It felt that God was scraping sin from the deepest part of my soul. It was like God was scraping the bottom of an old rusty steel barrel that was my soul. It was painful, but at the same time, it was cleansing and good. Every time I opened my mouth to tell people what was happening, the tongue would start again.

I was amazed. I am still amazed many years later. My son went on to be completely healed by God. I learned God is not deaf. He hears our cries and is still alive and active just like we read in Acts."

NOTE: Look at the SBC today with its internal problems and its 60% or so invisible and unlocatable members, and then ask yourself if the church could use more or less of the sort of miraculous things Dr. Myers mentions.

PS: I just traded a couple emails with Dr. Myers. We've both been Methodist, Presbyterian, and now Baptist. Maybe THAT's the key to this Baptist-being-Pentecostal thing.

Hmmm......

Labels: ,

7 Comments:

At 7:50 AM, July 24, 2008, Anonymous annie said...

Great post. Raised church of Christ myself I came to some of those same realizations about God when my daughter Isabelle nearly drowned.

 
At 8:35 AM, July 24, 2008, Blogger Bob Cleveland said...

Annie,

Thanks for reading, and commenting.

I went to your website and read about your experience with Annie. If you haven't already done so, you might check out this post.

I'll post this info on your blog, too; perhaps something in there will speak to you.

 
At 9:38 AM, July 24, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob..thanks again for allowing me to post on your site. Just to write and read my own writing once again this morning brings tears to my eyes. Somehow it is easy to forget that God is a spirit..not a building, not a place, not a denomination, not even a book. He chooses to reveal himself when we seek him from deep within our heart.

 
At 11:59 AM, July 24, 2008, Blogger Bob Cleveland said...

Dr. M,

I like to think of the Holy Ghost as a "verb". I don't think He "lives in us" as much as He lives in our lives.

Thanks for the post and the comment.

 
At 5:27 PM, July 24, 2008, Blogger Steve said...

This was simply amazing. Praise God!

 
At 10:31 PM, July 24, 2008, Blogger Ken Hearn said...

"nutty, uneducated, Pentecostal".

I am not uneducated......just kidding

Great post Bob

 
At 11:39 AM, July 25, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob and others…Jesus certainly emphasized the importance of the coming of the Holy Spirit. To the Apostles the Holy Spirit was a central part of their life and spectacular manifestations of the Holy Spirit were expected and encouraged. And yet today in many churches and denominations these same manifestations are looked upon with mockery and are clearly not welcome.

Has the church become afraid of the Holy Spirit? And if so why?

 

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home