Behind the Word: A Close Encounter with the Holy Spirit

Left Split

Psalm 104:24-30

My first time was at summer camp.  Lake Chautauqua Lutheran Camp.

It was the first time I remember feeling the Holy Spirit.  I wouldn’t have said, “I am feeling the Holy Spirit,” back then of course.  But I might have told you I felt, something.

Our camp counselor had just lit a candle with a wooden matchstick.  You could smell the sulfur of the match as he poured a few drops of wax onto the wooden floor of our cabin in order to secure the candle in place.

The twelve of us “cabin-mates” were gathered together in a circle around that flame as our counselor brought out his guitar.  The song he sang, “Father, I Adore You,” was simple enough. I had heard it before at our campfires; but this time it was different.

I felt the Holy Spirit.

Physically, all I remember happening was that tingling feeling on the back of my neck, and all the hairs standing up.  But inside…inside I felt different…like the beginning of God calling…it wasn’t the booming voice of God…more like a whisper…but I felt it.

Have you experienced the Holy Spirit?  The Spirit is all around us, with us, within us. The Spirit calls to us and coaxes us into new life.  The Spirit gathers us and empowers us in community.  The Spirit confirms our faith and gives us strength for daily challenges.
How have you felt the Spirit?  Where have you seen the Spirit?  Click on “comments” to continue the conversation.


I remember first feeling the Spirit… REALLY feeling it when I was “saved.” I was 17 years old, a senior in high school… and it was magical.

The Spirit surprises me often. Even though there have been several times where my faith wasn’t the highest, I can truly say that there has never been a time in my life where the Spirit wasn’t with me. It’s there. Even if I don’t feel it.

One of the greatest joys for me as a teacher is seeing the Spirit in my students. Feeling a special something. It’s hard to explain… but it’s an AWESOME experience.

Joanna said...

Hi!!! This is great.. I’d like to share my experience how I encounterd the Holy Spirit..^_^
I’m from the Philippines. We had an Encounter God Retreat that was held in our Prayer Mountain. In the last session of our EGR, we were told to open our hearts and seek God, pray to Him. I was serious and I really wanted to encounter God’s spirit. I want Him to change me. So I closed my eyes, and sincerely prayed.. I didn’t mind the people beside me because it’s a personal encounter with God. I didn’t doubt, I didn’t fear, I just believed.. And then, when the Pastor touched my head, he prayed, he said “burn , burn , burn..” I focused on God. Then, I felt a burning sensation from the back of my neck, going down to my chest or bossom.. While the Pastor was praying for me, he slightly pushed my head, I fell down on the floor, someone behind my back caught me. And then, the Pastor kept praying for me. I was crying while lying down on the floor.. Others I could hear were shouting.. calling out to God. It was awesome, memorable experience. I was the oldest in the group of people, coz I was 17 years old. My fellow groups are between 14 to 16…
Mine was a very warm feeling inside of my body when the Pastor prayed for me.

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Lisa said...

I was in my early teens at a summer Youth Bible Camp in Upstate NY when we were all at our daily evening service and were urged to “receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.”. The way we were supposed to recognize exactly when this was to happen would be evidenced by “speaking in tongues” — actually in the form of another language or gibberish. In the meantime, we were asked to remain in prayer and continuously praise the Lord until we ran out of words to say and then just “let it go.”. Since I already spoke a foreign language, it wasn’t hard at all for me to go off and utter a bunch of unintelligible syllables. I got caught up in the frenzy of it all because everyone was doing the same thing. I do know that the Holy Spirit was in our midst that night, but for me it wasn’t the first time. This was surprisingly a very familiar feeling for me since I was about 5 or 6 years old. What made ME know it was the Holy Spirit was the warmth inside my heart that spread out into my entire body and then moved me to tears. This happens to me today, whether I am alone praying, worshipping with others in a service, or singing alone or together in community. It can happen when Pastor says something that God wants me to hear. The Holy Spirit touches us ALL in various forms, but like God the Father and Jesus the Son, we will know the Spirit as our familiar Guide and Friend that accompanies us throughout life. It is the voice of God.

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