Now in 1 Corinthians 14:5, Paul said he would that all people would speak in tongues. I had experienced this after a great deal of difficulty. In fact, I may even speak here of the tongue speaking aspect as it pertained to my life.
Our Youth Director, Ed Barber, was trying to repair a tape that our secretary, had jammed her machine. As a result of the jamming, the tape had become twisted. Ed was trying to untwist it and he gave it to me since he knew I had some experience in repairing tapes. In the repairing I broke the tape. This meant that I had to scotch tape it together. After the taping, I backed it up a few inches to make sure I had the right side facing the right direction. On this particular tape both sides locked the same to me. When I depressed the play button, I heard the speaker talking about receiving tongues. What he said was so interesting to me that I could not stop the recorder, I had to listen to it. He was saying that a lady had attended a meeting at which time the Baptism of the Holy Spirit was expounded.
After this, people had the opportunity to come forward. When she cane forward, she did not receive her tongues and went home embittered about it. When she got home, her husband was watching a very interesting TV program so she went into her room, knelt beside her bed and asked Jesus to baptize her aid give her tongues. As she asked for the receiving of her tongues, instantly she heard the sound of rushing, mighty winds which we read of in the Book of Acts. Again, instantly, she received her baptism and broke out in tongues. Then she realized that the furnace had gone on. I thought that was so funny that I had to listen to this unknown person on the tape.
I had to make a call on someone out in the country so I grabbed up the play-back cassette, put it in the car, and listened to the message all the way out and all the way back from my appointment, it was as a result of this that I realized that tongues was for everybody, including me, and that I could receive it. The reason I had not received it was not on God's part but because of some hang-up of mine in some fashion or another.
So as I was driving down the road past Hunter Liggett, I began thinking of one verse of Scripture that says, "They were seated in a room and were of one accord and they were praising God." Maybe their hands were lifted and they were praising God. So I thought, "Well, Lord, I am going to get just as Biblical as I can driving down this road. I know it is scriptural to raise hands in prayer. I am just going to lift up my hands and praise You." You know, as I was driving along, I felt real good as Cod's presence was felt very keenly. So I tried to steer with my knees down the deserted road. That's very difficult to do.
But I lifted up my hands and put my knees on the wheel and I drove and I was really making progress and getting through until I came to a curve in the road. I knew I had to do one of two things, hold my hands up or hold onto the steering wheel. So, I had to go back to steering myself, which has been a real hangup with me and with a lot of people in the Bible-doing it ourselves. It was not until the Lord dealt with them and they forgot all their natural ability and lean entirely upon Him, did they receive His blessing.
So I wanted God's blessing. I negotiated the curve and again I was doing real good. I was really getting through, I thought, until another curve came. I just can't tell you how many curves there are between the Fort Hunter Liggett gate and where I was going to in the Indians (a place in the mountains where there were a number of cabins). That was my determination, my wrestling with God. But nothing was really happening. I felt just as good as when I left King City. I came to a cattle guard and had to stop my car. Then I said, " Lord, when I start this car, it's just You and me and I want to RECEIVE!!
I dug out!! The tires sent gravel flying everywhere. Soon I came to a dead stop. Again I drove away, lifting up my hands and praying, feeling good but no different that I had felt in King City.
Throughout the course of the day I prayed, I praised and did a lot of planning. Sitting on my chair under a shade tree I asked the Lord to send a mighty wind, as it was getting pretty hot. This would really be a sign and I had been one to go by signs. believe these things and so I asked for a sign. Then the wind started blowing and that was really great and it refreshed me, and it got pretty strong, too. That really enthused me, until the devil said, "Well, it always blows around here." So it was just another wind. And I gave up another wrestling match.
Later, I was lying out in the sun on an old Army cot working on my tan, with the sun warm on my body. I was praising God and asking Him to do something for Community Church, traditionally and non-traditionally, so that the faith of the people might be more meaningful, so that we all might be fulfilled. Signs and wonders are supposed to follow the believer and I don't see that around most churches. Something has gone wrong. I further know that it is not God that leaves us. I wanted more from God so I could give more to my people. I knew the scripture, "In vain do you keep the traditions of man."
Now, we are all Christian people, but there is so much more to it than just being a Christian. You have heard me say that so many churches get hung up on preaching salvation every Sunday that you know it. But what do you do after you become saved? Well, you have to grow a little bit, and I have since found a lot of growth in many people. I want to have growth in myself, and I have been quite stagnant. I don't think I have been growing like I should. So this was the reason for the wrestling match that day. I was tired of doing it myself. I was tired of asking people to come to Church, planning the programs, doing this and that and relying upon my own resources.
All of a sudden there clicked something within my inner being that is hard to understand in words, but at that moment I knew that I had received a baptism of Jesus. I had asked Him in when I was a boy, eight or nine years of age, and He had been living there for many years. But on occasion I would receive Him and spectacular things would happen. After those things happened it was my doings but I did always credit it to God. I would close my door and leave my guest, my master, in the living room instead of the work roan. At that time I must confess that mi unusual feeling cane over me because I knew that at that moment I had really let Him me in to all the rooms. And as I released Him and gave Him freedom, I was able to praise Him for the first time not from my brain, but from my spirit - my inner man. I had my prayer language.