My First Experience PDF Print E-mail
Written by Dr. William Mark Bristow   
Friday, 16 December 2011 03:54

Are you hungry to be used of God?  I’m so hungry for more – more of His love.  – More of Him.  – More of His supernatural Power. 

 

And I’ve had great privilege in my life to be with men and women who have moved in the world changing supernatural Power of God for the better part of the 20th Century. 

 

Raised as a Southern Baptist, born-again in a definite experience at 10 years of age, I was taught the miraculous and supernatural of God passed off the scene when the venerable Apostle John died about the end of the 1st Century in Ephesus.  Even as a teenager, I felt a call from God, though that call was indefinable at the time.  I knew there must be more.  There must be power to live for God and to be a witness. 

 

 

 

God’s Word promises to answer that prayer of spiritual hunger.  Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.”  (Matthew 5:6 KJV)  My answer came through the ministry of Kathryn Kuhlman in the early 1970’s.  My mom and I attended one of her “Miracle Services” in the Municipal Auditorium of Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas.

 

A few weeks later, I received the answer to that spiritual hunger and thirst, when I was baptized – filled – “waterlogged” with the power of the Holy Spirit in an experience I shall never forget.  It is as real – as vivid to me today as it was that Sunday afternoon in June when kneeling by the side of my bed, feeling my own awkwardness and uncertainty before God.  (There is a strong memory of the uncomfortable hardwood maple floor against my fourteen year old knees.)

 

“God please – Fill me with your Holy Spirit.  Baptize me.  Give me your Power.”  I had prayed for some time, trying not to be repetitious, but asking sincerely, definitely, and most surely – desperately.   Suddenly I was aware of His voice – that “still, small voice” that Elijah encountered (1 Kings 19:12), “Be still.  Be quiet.  Won’t you believe I’m a good enough God to give you what you ask?”  I was shocked!  That still small voice is as real to me today, and it had the impact of the Apostle John’s “sound of many waters,“ (Rev 1:15) and “like a trumpet behind me” (Rev 1:10).

 

He continued, “What does Mark 11:23-24 say?” 

“You know what it says – you wrote it…” was in my head, but I didn’t voice it. 

He knew my mind and asked, “Just humor me.  What does it say?”

For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. 24Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.”  I quoted in my best King James, feeling very awkward and astonished at this conversation.

“What does it mean?”  The Lord queried.

“Well it means, if I ask you for something I should believe you give it to me.” I answered.  There was the sudden memory of once asking my mother for a glass of milk.  She heard my request from the kitchen and I had heard her reply as her voice carried down the hall.  I had known at any moment her smiling face would appear at my door and there would be tall glass of cold milk in her hand.  There had been no surprise when she appeared with the milk – just the thanks and gratitude of a teenage boy at the kindness of this “superwoman, waiter, nurse, comforter, teacher, encourager, protector, smartest person in the world who answers every question, reader of stories, repairer of toys …”

Again, the Lord knew my thoughts.  “Yes.  Then believe me like that.”

Kneeling, I asked once again, “Lord, Baptize me with your Holy Spirit.”

There was no particular feeling (the hardwood against my knees), but I could hear words in my head – strange peculiar sounds – as though I could hear someone speaking a foreign language.

“Speak that out,” instructed the Lord.

I obeyed, feeling self-conscious, and that I might somehow be making this language up in my mind.  However, the power of His voice and instruction outweighed my reservations.  I began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave utterance.

 

After a few minutes, He spoke again.  “If you believe you’ve received, then dance for joy.”

 

Strangely, I didn’t feel particularly joyous, more curious, almost observing of this new experience.

 

The command was quiet, but Oh – so – powerful, I stood and began dancing and praising the Lord.  I was very happy at my experience, and at the same time I was glad I was alone in my room and no one was watching.

 

Afterward I told my mom, and then friends who prayed with me and we “prayed in the Spirit” and “sang in the Spirit” and with the understanding, together.  (1 Cor. 14:15)

 

Where was the ecstasy, the overwhelming, of the Holy Spirit’s power of which I heard so many speak?  I was about to find out. 

 

A teenage friend who was not walking with the Lord came to visit.  “Tell him what has happened to you,” and I recognized that same still small, but powerful voice. 

 

“Yes, Lord,” I answered mentally.

 

As I began to tell my friend of my experience … I can only begin to tell you here.  The overwhelming presence, the glorious presence, the ecstasy – I may very well have acted like those thought to be drunk in Acts 2, as I told of what I had received.  My friend was overcome by this same powerful, overwhelming, loving, peaceful, joyful, wooing, worshipful presence which I would come to understand as the Anointing of the Holy Spirit.  The effects of which remained upon me for about three days.   (He began his journey back to God at that moment and received his own Baptism of the Holy Spirit a short time later.  He is still my good friend today.)

 

A friend of mine, Pastor Marcos, often says, “Once you’ve had fire, smoke won’t do.”

 

True.  True.  So began a quest, an obsession really, almost an “addiction” for lack of a better word for the incredible Supernatural of God.  Not just for the experience sake, but to see the look on faces as others receive and are changed by the same Supernatural Power of the Holy Spirit who captured my heart and soul for Jesus.

 

Some understand, and some may never understand this thing of the call of God when later that same still small voice, most unexpectedly, “Will you preach for me?”  So definite it stopped me in my tracks!  I had the answer in a moment, “If you will confirm the Word with signs following, YES!”  And He imprinted on my soul, my brain, my Spirit, my body, on every atom of my being that HUNGER for more of HIM!  -- That HUNGER for SOULS!

 

The intervening years have been a school with some of the greatest men and women who have walked with God in our generation.  What great privilege I’ve had to work with R. S. “Bud” and Betty Miller of www.bible.com.  To learn office procedures, play the organ for and minister alongside the late Charles and Frances Hunter.  To travel, preach, pray, lead worship, for the late Evangelist Dr. Jerry B. Walker.  To manage the offices, lead worship, and be a help in travel for Prophetess Aquilla Nash.  To minister alongside Kathryn Kuhlman’s longtime associate, Ruth Fisher, both in her own services and as she allowed me to tag along with her in Pastor Benny Hinn’s great Miracle Crusades.  To minister alongside, be a help, and play the organ for the legendary Missionary and Evangelist Sister Gwen Shaw and her team.  I could go on for pages, but you understand the privilege God has afforded what would otherwise be an insignificant life.

 

It is from this wealth of experience with many of God’s choice servants I want to share things I have learned, that will give you understanding both of the working of the Holy Spirit and learning to cooperate with Him.

 

Jesus said, “behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.” (John 4:35b KJV)

 

Last Updated on Friday, 16 December 2011 17:59
 
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