“Lani, I got filled with the Holy Spirit,” my mom said over the phone.
“What? How did it happen?” I was skeptical but wanted to experiencing this myself. I had just started attending Hawaii Kai Baptist Church and wanted to know more about the Holy
“I was reading the second chapter of Acts where the Holy Spirit was poured out in the upper room and I wanted that to happen to me. It’s called Pentecost,” she explained.
“Then what happend?” I had read that same passage myself but it was a mystery to me. I had asked about the Holy Spirit at the Bible studies that I attended but no one could answer my questions.
“Well I prayed for what they had and I felt a warmth and electricity sweep through my body and I started speaking in tongues,” she said laughing.
“What? Speaking in tongues?”
“Yeah I couldn’t control it Lani, it just happend.” I was stunned. “Are you still their?”
“Yes,” I replied woodenly.
“And then you wouldn’t believe what happened next,” she continued.
“What happend?” I felt like I was watching a movie.
“I took my cigarettes and flushed them down the toilet,” she said excitedly. “I haven’t smoked a cigarette in over a week and I don’t miss it.”
I was surprised at how quickly my mom received the Holy Spirit and the effect on her life. My mom wasn’t at a church when the Holy Spirit poured out on her. She was sitting at home, reading her Bible with a desire for what she just read to happen right now.
The passage that mom read is:
“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues[a] as the Spirit enabled them.” Acts 2:1-4
Mom was attending Glad Tidings Assemblies of God church in Hilo, HI. She loved the church. Mom and my stepfather got married at that church which was a beautiful Hawaiian-style ceremony.
Mom’s experience with the Holy Spirit caused me to read the scriptures and seek God. My own experience with the Holy Spirit came a year later when I got baptized at Ala Moana Beach Park in Honolulu, HI. I started attending a church across the street from the University of Hawaii Manoa when I was a student.
I had asked about the baptism in the Holy Spirit and the leaders encouraged me to pray and believe that this would happen when I got baptized. At that church, we baptized people once a month at the beach.
I remember the pastor lifting me up out of the water and the same warmth that my told me about overcame me. I started speaking in tongues as the pastor prayed for me. Everyone clapped and sang praises to God when I walked out of the water.
Since that time, I felt like a brand new person. I felt like I had tapped into a power source for living the Christian life. Scriptures that puzzled me became clear. I wondered how could I
have lived the Christian life without the power of the Holy Spirit.
That same power that changed my mom’s life in her living room has dramatically changed the pattern of my family. The power of the Holy Spirit broke the bondage of dysfunctional relationships. I’m not saying everything was perfect after mom got filled with the Holy Spirit.
Mom still struggled to do what’s right and to live what she believed. But she wasn’t alone in trying to love God and live a life that was pleasing to Him. She had the Holy Spirit bringing
wisdom, comfort and counsel.
Mom’s Day of Pentecost changed my destiny. Although my grandfather and dad had multiple marriages, I have been married to the same man for 22 years. My mom also had been with my stepfather, Celes, for over 25 years.
The Holy Spirit grafted my mom into the line of Jesus and brought a new pattern of loyalty, love, commitment and sacrifice. Empowered by the Holy Spirit, we can stay loyal to our spouses and be who we need to be for our families and community. One person touched by the Holy Spirit can change a whole family.
Tomorrow the church celebrates Pentecost Sunday. If you’re not filled with the Holy Spirit, I want to pray with you. I also want to invite you to World Revival Church if you live in Kansas City area to learn more about the Holy Spirit.
Click here to learn more about the role of the Holy Spirit.
Click here to learn what blocks the power of the Holy Spirit.