#RWISA “RISE-UP” Tour, Day 1, PTL Perrin @ptlperrin, @RRBC_Org @RRBC_RWISA @Tweets4RWISA #RRBC



by PTL Perrin

After Mom left Spain and moved to Naples, Florida, she and my sister Margie would sometimes visit Bill and me on the Atlantic coast of our state. They both enjoyed coming to church with us, and our church family loved them. We believe the gifts of the Spirit the Bible talks about are as alive and vital today as they were in the early church. The Holy Spirit is in us when we become Christians, but there’s an additional empowerment available for us as described in the book of Acts, chapter two.

As our pastor says, “We’re Spirit-filled, Charismatic, Bible believing, tongue-talking, Pentecostal Christians.” So, what happened to Mom one Sunday came as no surprise to anyone. The delivery was unusual, but so typically Mom.

After our worship music, Pastor singled Mom out and called her up for prayer. In her mid-seventies, our mother still had a child-like enthusiasm and sense of wonder. She was happiest at the center of attention. She went up with wide-open eyes, raised eyebrows, and an expectant smile.

Pastor and Dolores Damon both have a gift of prophecy, which explained his sudden look of determination. God had just told him something about our mother. He looked Mom in the eyes and asked, “Have you ever received the baptism of the Holy Spirit?”

Mom’s mouth opened in an ‘o’ and she shook her head no.

Mom knew what that was. When Jesus left earth for Heaven, He told His disciples to gather and wait for the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, whom He would send in His place. The Spirit came on the day of Pentecost and filled every one of Jesus’s followers. They spoke in tongues, or languages they didn’t know. People from other countries who observed this phenomenon heard them speak in their own language. From then on, the Holy Spirit empowered them and taught them. We call that the baptism, and it’s available for everyone who wants it.

“The Holy Spirit wants to baptize you, Gerda,” he said. “May I pray for you?”

Her eyes nearly disappeared in crinkles as her smile stretched across her face. Her head bobbed in an energetic nod, and she bounced on her feet. “I’ve been wanting this for a long time, Pastor. I’m so excited! I can hardly wait!”

“Gerda,” Pastor said, grinning nearly as widely as she. “In order to receive, you have to be quiet.”

Her jaw snapped shut, and he laid hands on her head and began praying in tongues. She stood quietly, her head bowed, and hands folded close to her chest.

He paused. “Gerda, when the Holy Spirit fills you, pray aloud, using whatever words come to mind.”

In my experience, when someone first prays in tongues, which can sound like gibberish to the person praying, they usually do so in a mumble, especially in a packed church. Rarely, the Spirit makes His presence known in a big way, and the receiver speaks louder. Guess how He manifested to my mother?

Margie and I watched intently, praying for her along with the pastor. As soon as he took his hands off her head and stepped back, Mom turned to face the congregation. She threw her arms wide, and with gestures, facial expressions, and a voice worthy of any great stage actress, she spoke to the congregation. She expressed her excitement and love for the Lord and love for each of them with eloquence that Margie and I understood only because we knew her body language. Not one word was understandable.

She spoke in sentences, and paragraphs, emphasizing some phrases by pointing to the ceiling or sweeping her arm as if including everyone in the audience. She smiled or frowned as the phrases flowed. As a multilingual family, my sister and I recognized it as a true foreign language.

Pastor turned to us, his brows drawn together in perplexity. “Is that German?” We shook our heads. “Italian?” We repeated the head shake, and at that point, we were both shaking with suppressed laughter. When he shrugged, we each grabbed a tissue, wiped our eyes, and turned our attention back to Mom.

Secure and happy in the spotlight, Mom preached, sharing the joy that filled her heart with the people she loved. Since I didn’t understand what she said, I looked around at the congregation. Some were staring at us, as if we could understand her. Some had tears running down their faces. Others had their heads bowed in prayer or laughter. It didn’t matter. A wave of joy spread through us all, and soon the building filled with the sounds of praise. The Holy Spirit showed up, and He was happy with our mom.

Mom eventually came back to her seat between us, the congregation settled, and Pastor’s sermon was as timely and full of truth and wisdom as ever. I can’t be sure our mother heard a word of it. As she mumbled in her softest voice with an occasional quiet laugh and a distant look in her eyes, we felt her communing with God and didn’t nudge her to pay attention, as we normally would have done.

On the way home after service, Margie asked her, “Mom, what were you saying to the church this morning?”

Mom gave her an intense look, shook her head, and said, “Weren’t you paying attention? I was speaking English.”

When Mom jumped from one language to another, which she often did with her friends who might be more fluent in their own tongue, she was unaware that she was doing it. If she started in English, no matter how often she skipped from English to German, Spanish, or Italian, she was still speaking English in her mind.

Margie’s eyebrows rose as high as I’d ever seen them go and she turned to me. I must have had the same surprised look. My mother understood every word of the new language the Holy Spirit gave her.

Soon after, we took a road trip together. I drove, Margie had shotgun, and Mom sat nestled in the back seat, flanked by a cooler, bags, and blankets. Where normally she would have directed my every move as the queen of backseat drivers, during the entire trip, she talked, laughed, and sometime wept in the presence of the Lord, speaking his language.


Thanks for supporting me!


Twitter:  @ptlperrin

Please visit my RWISA Profile to learn more about me and my books!

Thank you for supporting today’s RWISA author along the RWISA “RISE-UP” Blog Tour!  To follow along with the rest of the tour, please visit the main RWISA “RISE-UP” Blog Tour page on the RWISA site.  For a chance to win a bundle of e-books along with a $5 Amazon gift card, please leave a comment below and on the main RWISA “RISE-UP”Blog Tour page!  Thank you and good luck!  



Add yours →

  1. Such an amazing story about your mom’s baptism Patty.I believe love and kindness to be the greateat gifts for us all.


  2. Whatever the language, your Mom speaks L-O-V-E, the greatest gift of all!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Patty! That’s a wonderful, inspirational story about your dear mother.

    Thank you for sharing it.


    • Thank you, Shirley! She was quite a character, but her love for her family and for her Lord was deep and genuine. I look forward to seeing her in Heaven one day! Thanks for stopping by. Blessings!


  4. Reblogged this on PTL Perrin Writes… and commented:
    Was there something your mom did that you’ll never forget? Our mother was an unforgettable character. This is the time she delivered a sermon at church that no one expected and no one understood a word of! Enjoy the story and leave a comment on the RWISA page for a chance to win a bundle of ebooks along with an Amazon gift card!


  5. Reblogged this on Watch Nonnie Write! and commented:

    This week, we’re showcasing RWISA Writers as they share their memories of their moms with us! Day 1 was kicked off by Ms. Patty Perrin! Enjoy, my friends!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. What a great memory to have of your mom, Patty! Thanks for sharing it with us. 🙂

    Yvette M Calleiro 🙂


  7. Patty, what a testament to your mother. This writing provided clear visual snapshots of your mother in front of the parishioners. Thanks for writing!


  8. Patty, A great post with vivid visuals – I could see your Mom up in front of your congregation, arms spread wide, spreading her love! A lovely tribute!


  9. Patty, your mom sounds like an absolute delight!


  10. Have fun today, Patty! I will return to read your post!


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