I promised I’d write about speaking in tongues, didn’t I? So I will.
The women’s Bible study on Wednesday has just started reading The Walk of the Spirit: The Walk of Power by Dave Roberson. It is largely about praying in tongues. You can download the complete pdf from that link if you want to; I suspect he did a limited-run vanity publication at one point but he certainly isn’t selling it now, though you can get used copies.
I’ve only read the first chapter, but so far I haven’t been all that impressed. He’s very good at drawing word pictures, but he also comes across as quite pompous, and he seems to assume that people are linear systems. People are chaotic systems. Some of us moreso than others. However, it came to us highly recommended, so presumably there’s actually useful ideas beneath the pontification.
Now, I have never been especially fluent at praying in tongues, though I can do it. (Hero’s much better at it than I am, and I find it incredibly relaxing and comforting to listen to him do so.) But the last time I really tried was a couple months ago, at one of these women’s meetings in fact, and I ended up getting close to a panic attack after a few minutes.
I wasn’t sure what to do about this. I don’t use tongues all that often, but I like to have it available, and if we’re doing a whole study on the topic I’d like to participate in the experiments. But I had no plan of attack.
It isn’t sin. I can easily imagine having trouble with tongues because of pride or control issues or whatever, but I’m pretty sure I’m not guilty of that. Which is almost a pity, since sin is quite easy to deal with.
I suspect it’s trauma. I’m not sure why it would kick in now when it wasn’t there before, but I think it’s related to the whole selective mutism thing – I had so much trouble speaking my own words for so long that I don’t like speaking someone else’s. Or, more likely, I had words put in my mouth (because I couldn’t speak to correct it) for a long time and now I don’t want to hand that control back.
But knowing it’s trauma doesn’t actually help formulate a plan of action. I can’t very well go to my (secular) therapists and say I’m having trouble speaking in tongues, though it’d be quite fun to watch their faces if I did.
But I prayed about it with Mom and with Hero and I think I’m just supposed to relax and let God handle it. He’s quite capable of doing whatever fiddling around needs to happen. So if phrases come to mind I speak them, and when I feel tense I stop and listen to the others. It’s lovely to hear.