What are your Experiences with Spiritual Gifts?

I am a charismatic, for lack of a better term.  I fully believe that the Holy Spirit is working in parts of the Church just has was done in the first century.  During my time as a charismatic, I have seen both good and bad uses of “spiritual gifts”.  I have seen people healed physically and emotionally and I have see people harmed through misuse and outright abuse.

I am curious as to what others have experienced in their dealings with spiritual gifts.  Please leave a comment and share so that we can see both the good and bad that is out there while raising awareness of what is going on.

Encountering God at a Funeral

When my grandmother passed away earlier this year, all of the male grandchildren and great grandchildren were asked to be pallbearers.  This was my first time as a pallbearer so I was not sure what to expect.  What if the casket is too heavy or if it drops.  I think these are normal thoughts that go through a person’s mind, but maybe not.

Well, all of the pallbearers were sitting together and you could see various stages of emotions cross their faces.  I often wonder what other people are thinking.  I could blindly assume we all think the same way, but that is ignorant and being that I am not very close to that side of my family, I am never really sure what they think.

The service was really nice.  There had been tension between the children on how everything should go, so there ended up being two pastors who spoke.  The first one was my father’s pastor, whom I knew, and the other one was the pastor at the church where my grandmother attended.  I say it like that as most of my family is Baptist, but they are going through a common stage where they are looking for something “more” spiritually.

I liked the Baptist pastor a lot.  I have never met the man before, but he was passionate and had a connection to God.  It was during his speech that I heard him talk about my grandmother’s faith.  She was devoted to church, but she had prayed everyday for her family.  I knew she had prayed, but no clue about the extent of her prayer life.  While I was sitting there, I was pulled out of my thoughts when I heard the young pastor talk about how she prayed for family and specifically one of them who never believed in God but had since turned their life over and was now saved.

That hit home with me as that is my story, but I had never talked to the pastor before so I figured he was talking about my uncle.  It was odd to hear that, but it reaffirmed that God works through prayer.

After the funeral, family and friends went to the local community center and ate and had fellowship with each other.  I questioned to my dad about what was said and he did not recall hearing that.  When I was able to speak to the young pastor about that portion of his sermon, he denied having said anything like that.

I was positive that I heard that being said, but with the pastor denying saying it, I knew it was the work of the Holy Spirit.    What I heard was meant for me and spoken by God.  Now it came through the voice of the pastor, at least as far I could tell, but I know God was letting me know that He had been present in my life since the beginning and that others have been praying for salvation since birth.

The feeling I got from that was and is still overwhelming.