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Michael Todd

Personal Tipping Point

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OK, but my impressions, based on past experiences with Methodists, is that there is no denomination that better defines mainline Protestantism. I know the history of Methodism, and its openness to the Spirit. But I haven't seen that in contemporary Methodism. Not in my own (limited) experience.

Oh, I'm just as surprised by it as anyone. I've never seen anything like that occur at my church. I do know some members do pray in tongues, including the associate pastor and the people who host the small group I attend, but that just came out of the blue.

I also think it had some healing application to my own life. Like I said, I was raised UPC, and they taught that to go to Heaven, you must be saved, baptized, and speak in tongues. Well, I got saved when I was 8, and baptized when I was 9, but I never was able to speak in tongues. For most, that might have not been a big deal, but I was a paranoid child. I was convinced that I had until I was 12 to speak in tongues, because after that, each day was a crap shoot.

Why 12 years old? Somehow I picked up that 12 was the age of accountability. Jesus was preaching in the Temple when he was 12, I think that was the justification for why I thought that. Regardless, as time passed with no success, I became desperate. I was an odd child. I prayed a bare minimum for fifteen minutes on my knees every night before bed from the age of 8 until 14. I would sometimes stay there for an hour and a half.

Anyhow, as my twelfth birthday rolled around, I remember specifically praying to die. I didn't want to turn 12. I hadn't spoken in tongues, time was slipping away, and I wanted to make sure I made it to Heaven.

Maybe what happened to me this past Sunday night healed the wound from that event.

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