THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY GHOST.—REJECTED AS A BIBLE TEACHER IN METHODIST AND EPISCOPALIAN CHURCHES.—TAUGHT IN HOTEL DINING-ROOM.— VISION, WARNING AND BLESSING.—ENTERTAINING ANGELS.—THE JEWS.— PRAYER FOR RAIN AND ANSWER.—GOD’S JUDGEMENTS ON THE WICKED.— MOVED TO KANSAS.—DEATH OF MOTHER GLOYD.—SERMON OF A CATHOLIC PRIEST.
In this chapter I will tell of God’s leading. I say of my life, “This is the Lord’s doings and marvelous in our eyes.” A Methodist conference was held in Richmond, Texas, about the year 1884. I attended. The minister read the sixty-second chapter of Isaiah. From the time he began reading I was marvelously affected. Paul said it was not “lawful” or possible to utter some things. There was a halo around the minister. I was wrapt in ecstacy. My first impression was that an angel was talking and that the house was ascending to heaven. I felt my natural heart expanding to an enormous size. I looked to see what impression was made on the people in the audience. I saw one man nodding. I was surprised, for no one seemed at all astonished or delighted.
At the close of the meeting I tried to find out the meaning. No one felt as I did. I went to a saintly woman, Mrs. Ruth Todd, and asked her about the sermon. She had felt nothing remarkable. I had never been taught that anyone but the Apostles in Jesus’ time got the gift of the Holy Ghost, or I would have understood this wonderful state. I then and there openly consecrated myself to God, telling my friends that “from henceforth all my time, means and efforts should be given to God.” (Mr. Nation in his petition for divorce said that up to this year I had been a good wife.) I was often considered crazy, on the subject of religion. When I spoke to people I would ask them, “if they loved God;” I could not refrain from this; the servant in the kitchen, the guest, the merchant, the market man; I felt impelled by divine love for the souls of men.
God had given me an intense love for souls, and one was as precious as another to me. I now see what the enlarging of my heart meant. Once an old colored man brought in the kitchen some eggs to sell. I said: “Uncle, do you love God?” He turned to my cook Fannie and said: “Hear dat”. Fannie said: “Oh! Mrs. Nation knows the Lord.” Uncle said: “Thank God one white woman got ligen,” clapped his hands and praised God. It used to be and is now the sweetest music to have anyone praise God. I am at church often, when I long to hear a loud shout of praise go up to the giver of every good and perfect gift. It is torture to attend the cold, dead service of most of the churches.