Denzel Washington has described the moment he encountered the Holy Spirit as a “once in this lifetime experience” that spooked him a little too.
In an Instagram discussion with A R Bernard, Senior Pastor of the Christian Cultural Center in Brooklyn, New York, the Academy Award-winning actor said the encounter happened back in the eighties during an altar call at Bishop Charles E Blake’s West Angeles Church of God in Christ.
“I went to church … and when it came time to come down to the altar I said, ‘You know this time, I’m just going to go down there and give it up and see what happens,'” he said.
“I went in the prayer room and gave it up and let go and experienced something I’ve never experienced in my life.”
He called his mother afterwards to ask her about it.
“I said, ‘Well, you know it felt like I was going up in the air, and my cheeks were filled,'” he told.
His mother told him he felt like that because the Holy Spirit was purging the devil from him.
“It was a supernatural, once in this lifetime experience that I couldn’t completely understand at the time,” Washington said.
He admits the experience was so unexpected that he was a little unsettled by it.
“I was filled with the Holy Ghost and it scared me. I said, ‘Wait a minute, I didn’t want to go this deep, I want to party,'” he said.
But he never forgot the encounter and, during his discussion with Bernard, he said it was what kept him grounded when he made it big in Hollywood.
“It kept me grounded in spite of myself,” he said.