13 March, 2008

Unintelligible Man Speaks Clearly in Tongues

Pocataligo, SC - Everyone knows Donnie Lewis. The 58-year-old plumber from Pocataligo is always friendly and helpful to everyone in the community, at times making house calls in the middle of the night and refusing to charge his more elderly clients for work done. But while everyone loves and appreciates Lewis the fact remains that for as long as most people can remember no one has ever been able to understand him when he talks.

"He doesn't have a speech impediment or anything" said long-time friend Dorris Hinkle. "He just has this deep thick accent and tends to mumble out his words. I catch maybe ten to fifteen percent of what he says. But everyone loves him just the same. We just nod our heads and say 'Yeah, that's right' and kind of laugh when he says something."

Recently, though, something happened that has shocked and amazed almost everyone in the small South Carolina community. According to reports, two weeks ago during a "revival" service at the First Pentecostal Holiness Church of Pocataligo Lewis supposedly "received the gift of tongues" though in the most unexpected way.

"The service was really getting fired up" said Rev. Hal Abram, pastor of FPHC. "Donnie was sitting down there on the front row and I saw him with his hands raised in the air talking. But even over the noise I heard something, something that I had never heard before. I looked down and noticed that Donnie was talking and I could understand everything he was saying."

It wasn't long before the church became quiet and everyone in the congregation looked on and listened in amazement as Lewis stood in the church, eyes closed, hands raised to the air and spoke on perfect clear English.

"Everyone was dumbfounded" said Hinkle. "It was the first time I can ever remember completely understanding what Donnie was saying."

Lewis continued to speak for several minutes until he suddenly stopped, looked around at the crowd of people and proceeded to say something unintelligible to everyone. Since that day, Lewis has "received the gift" several more times, much to the delight and amazement of all of his friends.

"We look forward to every Sunday now" said friend Mark Holden. "After knowing Donnie all these years, it's just so nice to understand what he's saying. I just pray for him to speak in tongues more often."


Joe Blackmon said...

Next thing you know, somebody with Restless Leg Syndrome will get all filled up with the Holy Ghost and be able to keep their legs still.

Darrin said...

Joe, good one.
Tom, if the man in the story is a native South Carolinian, most likely his original language was very close to an angelic tongue. Thus his fellow believers should have sought the gift of intepretation. But that failing, now he has been occasionally granted to speak in a tongue of men.

Jim Pemberton said...

A thick southern accent = angelic language. [hehehe...] I'm originally from the Midwest transplanted in the south. I wouldn't have derived the equation above, but this being the "Bible Belt", perhaps you're onto something.

Darrin said...

Re: southern accent. Yes, I've moved to the south from NY myself. I was actually thinking of a pastor, S. Lewis Johnson, by whom I've enjoyed hearing some recorded sermons on justification by grace recently. His accent was quite striking, and I found out that he was from SC and would joke that he was from the place where the English language was spoken properly, or something like that.