Thursday, August 30, 2012
So I went to a church revival.
I don't know if I've mentioned it much but I'm going to our local "megachurch" with my daughter since about Christmas, and they have a big revival each summer.
I had never been to a revival before and have always attended churches with NO faith healing, NO tongues, and really no very demonstrative habits. In fact, with my background I am more comfortable with the Quaker tradition of just sitting in the silence than with people falling down in the aisles. In my family of origin we attend church but do not discuss it, do not pray other than perfunctory grace, don't discuss politics at all, don't hug, and never say I love you. **not demonstrative** Just explaining so you can grasp the culture shock this kind of thing is for me.
First was music, then a little lecture by Rev. Hagin about .. um... Matthew 9:20 I think. The woman who touched the hem of Jesus's robe and was healed and he said that "by her faith" she was healed. Then he asked who was in need of healing and people lined up and he basically just touched each of them and said "be healed" or "by the power of Jesus" or something. Ushers made a safety line behind the people being touched in case they fell down, which a lot of people did. My ex husband went down to be healed. (I may not have ever mentioned the tumor in his skull? It's not a brain tumor, it's on an auditory nerve, but it is currently inoperable so that causes some issues.) I took video. Pt 1 was the very last bit of the sermon. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HpZorj0le-w Pt 2 is the actual healing part. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lwJZL72dkNs&feature=plcp Yes I'm an idiot and didn't flip the camera to landscape.
Then after that he asked if anyone felt healed, or felt a little better, and told some stories of past healings... just a lot of anecdotes. Then he prayed over some hankies, etc, that people brought with them. Then he asked for anyone who wanted to be saved, or to be filled with the spirit, or to recommit themselves to come forward and he prayed over them (us, because I went down too), and then that group exited out the side. In that group a girl gave her testimony and gave a prayer for everyone to say with her to accept Jesus and asking to be filled with the spirit, etc.
This is when it started to get weird for me, because then they started talking about how speaking in tongues was THE evidence of being filled with the spirit and there was a lot of pressure for those present to speak in tongues. Which I do not do. They really kept at it for a while. It was really interesting to listen to and I thought a lot about the concepts of language and the value of articulating a thought versus just letting go and babbling, etc, but in the end my WASPy self just can't do that. In the end they told me that I have already received the gift, now I just have to yield to it. So that's food for thought. And they gave me some stuff to read later.
Do you believe in speaking in tongues or in faith healing? Or do you think it's all snake oil?
In any event, I wore a new dress from Dress Barn and an old drapey vest from Dots. (U.S., not Canadian Dots, which judging by Sheila's finds I am missing out!) The pattern under the waist seam is a bit asymmetrical but the vest does a good job of covering it up. It felt like a bit much cleavage so later I ran to Kmart and got a cream tank for underneath.