I read an interesting testimony by James Alford who serves as an Apostle of the Righteousness Ministries International Church based in Marietta, Georgia.
His testimony on Charisma revealed the secret power behind speaking in tongues. Tongues is one of the gifts bestowed on believers when they are baptized in the Holy Spirit.
A few years ago, Alford was sitting in a passenger jet getting ready for take off. The pilot had just announced there would be a delay and at that very moment the Holy Spirit told Alford to start speaking in tongues.
Though, he wasn’t sure why God wanted him to do this, Alford started exercising his spiritual gift. The plane ended up sitting on the runway for an hour and a half, and when he felt like quitting, God told Alford to keep speaking in tongues.
It is difficult to do something like this when you don’t have the complete picture, but Alford obeyed this prompting, because that is really all it was.
How many times have people received similar promptings but shook it off?
After 90 minutes, the pilot announced they had received permission to start their flight and started making his way to the runway.
In response to this news, the Holy Spirit told Alford to continue speaking in tongues.
As the plane turned onto the runway, the pilot gunned the engines for take off and as the plane gained speed, the pilot suddenly pulled out of the flight.
At that point, the Holy Spirit told Alford he could now stop speaking in tongues.
Of course everyone was puzzled by what was going on, and a few minutes later the pilot announced what had happened. As the jet was increasing speed for take off, one of the engines cut out before it had taken flight.
If that had happened after the plane left the ground, the results could have potentially been disastrous.
Alford believes that this disaster was averted because of the gift of tongues, as God prayed through him.
In 1 Corinthians 14:2, the Apostle Paul writes that when we speak in tongues we are not speaking to men, but rather to God. In other words it is a prayer language (1 Corinthians 14:15).
But Paul adds this idea, that when we speak in tongues, we are speaking mysteries. It is the Greek word “musterion,” that is defined by Thayer as “a hidden or secret thing not obvious to the understanding.”
And I believe this is exactly what happened to Alford, who didn’t even know there was a problem. God saw the danger and the Holy Spirit used this gift to pray the will of God averting this potentially dangerous situation.
As we pray in tongues, the Holy Spirit prays through us allowing God to direct our prayers so that they can be effectively answered.
When we pray, there are times we don’t completely understand what is going on and our prayers are ineffective. This is because we are not addressing the root of the problem. We are asking God to do something, and even if God specifically answered our prayer request, it would not resolve the problem.
Now there is nothing wrong with praying with understanding as Paul refers to it, but we need to allow the Holy Spirit to pray through us as well.