TITLE: A Symphony of Miracles Book 2 Chapter 32 12/30/14
By Richard McCaw
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Gold on the Surface
In mid-July, 1845, when James Wilson Marshall met John Sutter in California, he soon partnered with him to construct a sawmill. Examining the channel below the mill on the morning of January 24th, Marshall noticed some shiny flecks in the channel bed. Carefully studying them, he found that they could be beaten into different unbroken shapes. Collecting a few pieces, he exclaimed to one of the carpenters, "I have found it!"
"What is it?" inquired the man.
"Gold," he answered.
"That can't be!"" returned the man.
Marshall replied positively, "I know it to be nothing less!"
The gold was of the finest quality, at least 23 carats [96%]. News of the discovery soon reached around the world. All able-bodied men in the area left everything to search for gold. Before long, arriving hordes of prospectors forced Marshall and Sutter off their land.
Searching for truth is much like searching for gold. A few shiny flecks of truth found anywhere may indicate nuggets of truth not very far away. More earnest searching will definitely yield a wealth of liberating truth.
My first revelation of gifts of the Holy Spirit came after attending the last night of an Inter- Varsity Christian Fellowship Mission on the University of the West Indies campus.
A growing emptiness had begun to overshadow my life. I continued preaching, but when I prayed, I was conscious of mere words coming from my mouth. Greatly aware of my inadequacy, I felt like a hungry and thirsty wanderer in a desert.
I listened intently to the speaker in a hall filled with university students and visitors, but saw no further light on the subject of the Holy Spirit. After the meeting, I approached someone I had known from school days in Inter Schools Christian Fellowship circles.
â€śI think I need to be prayed for,â€ť I said.
As several of us walked away from the meeting hall toward the dormitories, we stopped and chatted for a few moments. Someone brought a chair and suggested that I sit. Four or five men gathered around and began praying over me. One by one they laid their hands on my shoulders, head, chest and back.
Suddenly, I recognized the voice of Tony Sellers, a former schoolmate speaking in Spanish. How could that be? I thought. He never learned Spanish at school! But I could not contradict my ears. I had to acknowledge the validity of his experience. I had heard Bobsey Dakin, an illiterate gardener, speaking in Spanish some years before, while praying in my own home, and now this!
Of course, whenever sincere but ignorant believers project extreme and unbiblical interpretations of scripture, there is bound to be equally sincere reactions from learned scholars of the Bible.
One such Bible teacher from one of our Bible Colleges in Jamaica, in his book â€śLet us reason concerning Tonguesâ€ť derided an attempt in modern times to give quite a different and new meaning to the Greek word â€śglossa,â€ť translated â€śtongue.â€ť He explained that such a meaning was foreign to the New Testament. The new meaning related to â€śspeech soundsâ€ť which carry no clear communication-content to the receiver â€“ ecstatic utterances, gibberish, meaningless phraseology â€“ totally unfitted for communication with other persons.
I remembered an older brotherâ€™s testimony in a Thursday night Bible study at church. He had found himself speaking in tongues. While no-one could verify his experience, I had not heard â€śgibberishâ€ť either from an illiterate gardener, praying with me after a reading class, or from a school mate praying around me in a foreign language which I clearly understood.
I suppose any argumentative skeptic with a strong bias against the supernatural could say, â€śYour mind must have been wrestling with deep inner problems!â€ť or â€śYou never really heard anyone speak in Spanish! Your mind was playing tricks because you were expecting to see or hear something!â€ť
I can imagine when men first heard that the earth was a sphere, sceptical arguments must have flowed wherever men met after a hard dayâ€™s work.
â€śNonsense, John!â€ť says a short fat, pot-bellied man as he lifts a jug to finish the last dregs of liquor.
â€śTheyâ€™ve sailed to the Indies!â€ť a slim fellow, his eyes boodshot red, shakes a tankard, his large lips frothy with beer. â€śItâ€™s true, John!â€ť
When men hear new things as in the days of Martin Luther, they fear that long-held traditions might be swept away. It is so today even among believers brought up either in emotional or traditional church settings.
However, I was not taught like so many in Pentecostal circles to â€śtarry for the Holy Ghost.â€ť I had not been in any environment where people fell to the ground, shouted, or were worked up emotionally by loud music, preaching, or any other external stimuli. I was simply seeking deliverance and God!
Soon I was ushered into one of the dormitories, with heavy burdens on my heart. There they continued to pray for me. Suddenly, a sense of my great sinfulness overwhelmed me, and just as suddenly, I became aware of a supernatural presence in the room. After so many experiences with the Spirit since then, I can now define it as the dynamic presence of the blessed Holy Spirit.
Like a dam that had burst its walls, I began to sob uncontrollably. Of course, â€śuncontrollablyâ€ť is not theologically the right term, since a lack of control cannot be associated with the Holy Spirit. However, that is how it seemed to me at the time. The breaking, bursting, gushing forth, was like a mighty stream that had been dammed up, and as it overflowed, it came so fast, a welcome release with no need to hold back! God was preparing me for the harvest fields, the many souls, lost and in need of a shepherd.
From that night on I said to myself, â€śI know without a doubt that there is something more than the ordinary hum-drum Christian life! Whatâ€™s more, I need to find out what it is!â€ť
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