FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT

               As a  preacher, traveling  and holding  special meetings,  I
          felt it was  my duty, and responsibility, to pray.  I never liked
          it, though, and always found it difficult and boring.  I spent at
          least forty-five minutes each day praying through my prayer list.
          Some  days, when  rushed, my  list  only took  twenty minutes  to
          negotiate.  For some reason,  I never felt as spiritual, however,
          on those days.   I never discussed my discontent  openly for fear
          of reproach  but it was  how I felt  nonetheless.  I  recall once
          spending an entire  night in prayer  but the next  morning I  was
          even more frustrated.   The reason?  I simply didn't  know how to
               As I began  my time in prayer with the  Lord, therefore, the
          first  day  of June  in  1982, I  didn't  have  a clue  as  to my
          direction.   The first few days  were spent complaining, griping,
          bellyaching, arguing,  accusing, crabbing,  fussing, threatening,
          objecting, expressing, denouncing, dumping, differing, dickering,
          intimating,   voicing,   mocking,  gnashing,   second   guessing,
          pleading,  hinting,   verbalizing,  spitting,   raving,  ranting,
          commenting, and wishing  before the throne of God.   Eventually I
          talked myself out and decided if  I were ever going to hear  from
          God,  it would have  to be  on His  terms.   Most of  my prayers,
          therefore, became characterized by silence.  
               As I continued to learned how to pray, I would often open my
          Bible and refer to portions of God's Word I failed to understand.
          I  usually picked those New  Testament verses which were promises
          relating to  answered prayer which  seemed impossible for  God to
          fulfill.  I also pointed  to those passages relating to  the Holy
          Spirit and His infilling in order that the Lord might show me His
          truth on this  topic.  Today, when  others inquire of me  what it
          means  to be filled  with the Holy Spirit,  I usually suggest the
          same passages which I used:  John  15, Ephesians 5, Acts 1/2, and
          Romans 8.  These passages led me to the true Scriptural awareness
          of the Spirit filled life.
               As I depleted  myself of all frustrations, I  began to focus
          on God and all  He had done.  I began to  recognize His creation,
          as King David did, and as David, I found God beyond my ability to
          comprehend.  As I began to thus magnify the Lord in my prayers, I
          realized He indeed was big  enough to handle all of  my problems.
          When I regarded His measureless power, I began to see how  he was
          able to deal with anything brought  before Him; including meeting
          me where I  was in my  pursuit of Him in  the person of  the Holy
          Spirit.   I didn't know that I was  beginning to learn to worship
               Our difficulty,  and struggle  in prayer,  is generally  the
          amplification of  our  problems, as  we  see them,  beyond  God's
          ability to cope I.E.,  we focus on the problem rather  than God's
          power to  bring a solution.   As I  reversed the  process through
          worship,  my problems  began  to  look smaller  in  light of  His
          eternal power and  Holiness.  Eventually it seemed  as though God
          could  do anything  and  when that  realization was  conceived, I
          began to praise Him for just being God.
               Many years ago  as a small  boy, and before  going blind,  I
          borrowed my uncle's  binoculars.  Turning off the  porch light, I
          ventured into the  darkness of the front  yard and on my  back in
          the freshly mowed  grass, I examined the night's sky.   The stars
          glistened  like   tiny  points   of  white   light  without   the
          magnification  of the  glasses.    Though  beautiful,  they  were
          insignificant points of heavenly  light.  With the  assistance of
          the  binoculars, however, they burst into flaming miniature balls
          of multicolored  illuminoids.  Pulling  the lens from my  eyes, I
          once again examined the stars with the naked eye.  The difference
          was striking.   Without the glasses, they were  only white points
          of  etherial light; tiny  pinpricks on  a velvety  black curtain.
          With the help of the binoculars, they were flashing orbs; winking
          blues, reds, and greens in a caliginous black sea.
               Prayer is just  such an enlarger; magnifier;  amplifier.  As
          we  worship  God   as  Creator,  Savior,   Deliverer,  Conqueror,
          Counselor,  Controller,  Commander,  and  Administrator,  of  the
          universe, our problems,  circumstances, and impossible situations
          become less of a threat in light  of His eternal immensity.  When
          such an  awareness of  God's presence  is realized,  our thoughts
          thus  are exchanged  for God's;  making it  possible to  see each
          situation as God.  When that occurs, nothing is impossible.
               When the  angel Gabriel spoke with Mary concerning the birth
          of Jesus, she  inquired as to how  such would happen.   The angel
          said it would be through an act of the Holy Spirit I.E., a virgin
          birth.   Gabriel concluded his  message by saying, "For  with God
          nothing  is impossible," (Luke 1:37).  The word (impossible) used
          by the angel  comes from  a root  word from which  we obtain  our
          words - "dynamite) and  (dynamic).  The  same Greek word is  used
          throughout  the New Testament  in the word  translated (miracle).
          What was Mary's  response to this announcement?   "And Mary said,
          Behold the handmaid of the Lord;  be it unto me according to  thy
          word. And  the  angel departed  from her,"  (Luke 1:38).   It  is
          unlikely that  our Lord would have been  born through Mary if she
          would have question  the method, or the message,  which the angel
               Reversing  the binoculars, I  peered through the  wrong end.
          The stars  were instantly  squeezed to  diminutive specs  of cold
          points of white light;  shapeless; without distinction;  distant;
          barely resembling  stars.   Prayer works similarly.   If  we were
          honest, much of what we call prayer is a lot of frustration taken
          out on  God for not  pulling us out of  a jam.   We've spent very
          little, if  any, time praying  until that very moment.   Usually,
          the only  reason  we are  praying, is  due to  the exhaustion  of
          personal  interventions.   In short,  we  have the  magnification
          reversed;  God  looking pretty  tiny  in the  background  and our
          problems  giant  manifestations  of  impossibilities.   The  best
          lesson I  learned during my time of prayer  was to wait upon God.
          Many  of  my   daily  prayer  times,  therefore,   became  silent
          sanctuaries  of  worship.   Perhaps  this  is  what  the psalmist
          referred to as "waiting upon the Lord."
               I spent a minimum of thirty minutes  each day in prayer.  If
          so inclined, and  on some days, I prayed early in the morning and
          then again later at night.  I began, during the first  few weeks,
          of bringing all my  needs before the Lord.  I  attempted to twist
          His arm by  reminding Him of His  promises to meet all  my needs.
          Some of my bills were  going unpaid.  If His Word  was true, that
          shouldn't be, and  I told Him  so.  Although  I didn't know  how,
          some  of my  prayers began to  be answered.   In fact,  after two
          months, though my income was incapable of covering all my monthly
          expenses, all my bills were paid in  full.  This, then, becomes a
          very  dangerous time for  the Christian seeking  something unique
          from  God.   When  prayers  begin to  be  answered, the  pressure
          lessens.  It is easy, then, to loose sight of the real purpose we
          had when beginning our pursuit  of God.  Fortunately, I saw  this
          as  a potential problem  and kept right  on praying.   In fact, I
          intensified my efforts.  Now that some of the major problems were
          eliminated, I  zeroed in  on what I  really wanted; to  be filled
          with the Holy Spirit.
               One day I  told my  wife I  had felt for  several days  that
          something was about to happen.  My wife stated her concern that I
          was going to run off half cocked on some spiritual high; charging
          hell with a squirt gun.  Though I confessed I was uncertain as to
          the end result,  I knew God was doing something and I was anxious
          to discover its identity.
               I  noticed that much  of my day was  spent meditating on the
          Scriptures I had been pouring over for the past couple of months.
          Though   I  was  actively  working  at  my  cassette  duplicating
          business, I had many  hours to ponder the Word of God  as I stood
          at my machines reproducing tapes.
               An  unusual thing  I realized  one  morning had  to do  with
          music.  Each  morning as I climbed from bed, I heard the sound of
          Christian music  playing on a  tiny record player  somewhere deep
          down inside of me.  It seemed that God was everywhere; even in my
          sleep.  Additionally, as I knelt to pray, each day, I became more
          conscious of  God's presence.   It seemed  as though He  was very
          near and that was something completely unfamiliar and unexpected.
          I also noticed that as I prayed,  I found myself saying, "we," as
          I addressed the Lord.  That, in itself, I thought strange and, in
          fact, it sort of  bothered me.  Who was this "we" I was referring
          to in my prayers?
               I cannot honestly  say that something happened to  me all at
          once, that is, suddenly.  There was no bolt of lightning; no clap
          of thunder; no  sounding cymbals; no  trumpet blast; no  heavenly
          rainbow;  no voice  booming from the  sky.  I  quietly sensed the
          presence of God  in my  prayers over a  period of several  weeks.
          The  funny thing  that happen  was my  apatite for  prayer became
          ferocious.  I found myself deliberately making more time to pray.
          The more I prayed, the greater my addiction.  It had  become like
          a drug  and I was hooked.  Eventually the presence of God was all
          about me whether I  prayed or not.  I recall  one day standing at
          my  high  speed  cassette duplicator,  plugging  in  blank tapes,
          popping them out when done  and replacing them with fresh blanks,
          when all of the sudden  I felt God's Holiness  all around me.   I
          pressed the off switch on  my equipment, walked to the  center of
          my work room in the basement, lay face down  on the floor and for
          several minutes praised and worshipped God  for who He was.  This
          particular experience greatly  disturbed me because we  never did
          such things in the church of my upbringing and frowned upon those
          who did.   I had read stories  of Torrey, Moody, and  Feny having
          such experiences  but I never expected such to  happen to me.  In
          fact, as I prayed during those weeks for God to fill me with  His
          Holy  Spirit, I  honestly never  thought  I would,  or could,  be
          filled.  I thought such was reserved for the great men  and women
          of God called to His  full time ministry.  I knew the  Lord would
          reveal  to me  the truth of  the Spirit  filled life but  I never
          thought it would be personally applicable.
               As I said, I  cannot point to a  moment in time where I  was
          filled with the Holy Spirit but I suddenly  realized one day that
          I was in fact filled.  The intensity of the experience lasted for
          nine full months.  During  that time I continually and constantly
          praised and worshipped God.  I  had, during this time, some  very
          difficult times and, as I  mentioned earlier, I was even rejected
          by my  own pastor.  He sat  in my living room and  told me that I
          was "out of the will of God."  He said it was time for me to stop
          fooling  myself that I  was called to  the ministry.   I remember
          this experience in my living  room, not because of what  he said,
          but because of what happened after he left.
               Returning  to the basement  a few minutes  later, I switched
          all my duplicating  equipment on and began to  work; occupying my
          thoughts in  order to avoid  the sadness attempting  to overwhelm
          me.  I remember very clearly standing with a cassette in  my left
          hand and a bulk eraser in the other.  The cassette had not copied
          properly and  I was erasing  it in order  that I might  reuse it.
          Warm  tears  began to  streak  my face  as my  mind  replayed the
          terrible words I had  just been forced to hear.   The pressure of
          the rejection experienced  the past few months  flooded my memory
          once  again for  the thousandth  time  and spilled  over into  my
          tender emotions.  As I stood pulling the trigger on the eraser to
          blank the cassette, I felt joy blossom in my spirit.   I might be
          a failure to some, perhaps even to myself, but God had  filled me
          with His  Spirit and  no one could  take that from  me.   A fresh
          smile crossed my lips as I replaced the tape in the machine.

                           End Of Chapter 11

                             LIQUID PURPLE


                              PHIL SCOVELL

                           Copyright 1991-2004

                            By Phil Scovell

                          All Rights Reserved

          Reproduction of the book  entitled "Liquid Purple" is granted  by
          the copyright holder, Phil Scovell,  if such reproduction is done
          in the  spirit in which it  was given.  It may  not be reproduced
          and sold  for financial gain  without written  permission of  the
          copyright  holder: Phil  Scovell.    Electronic  formats  may  be
          distributed freely  but this  copyright notice  must remain  with
          each  copy and  the  text cannot  be  altered in  any  way.   For
          convenience, this copyright notification may be placed at the end
          of the document  if reproduced electronically.   If chapters  and
          sections  of the  book entitled  "Liquid Purple" is  separated in
          file  form   for  convenience  of  electronic   reproduction  and
          distribution,  this copyright notice must appear somewhere within
          each individual file.


          Phil Scovell
          840 South Sheridan Boulevard
          Denver, Colorado  80226-8017
          Web:  WWW.RedWhiteAndBlue.ORG
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