Originally Posted by tdogg
... Although I too have felt God's presence at times when someone else was speaking, and haven't felt His presence at others. Last May while in Scotland with my aunt (who hasn't spoken to me in months - she is very condeming of my sexuality and relationship), who speaks in tongues although I don't necessarly feel the Lord's presence - anyway, she spoke to a group of Charismatic Catholics. They had a tongue speaking session where it appeared I was the only one not participating, and then the deal where she touched them and they fell. I was a little taken back at how disorganized it all felt, and did not feel the presence of God, but did feel like I wanted to leave... .
tdogg, what you describe here is pretty much identical to an experience I had at age 17. A friend of mine who belonged to a Congregational Holiness Church congregation (and this congregation actively taught one had not received the Holy Spirit and been extended salvation until one spoke in tongues) asked me to go to a worship service with him. I felt somewhat uncomfortable from the moment I entered the building, but at first just put it down to the fact I had never been there before. After the service got into full swing, though, my vision began to darken and I sensed a presence that had nothing to do with God. When one woman began to speak in an unknown tongue and others began to chime in, the darkness seemed to grow thicker. I had not choice but to excuse myself and leave as I began to have trouble breathing. Once my foot stepped off the property, my vision cleared and I could breathe normally.
That is the single most severe instance of being in a church and sensing the presence of evil.
Now, I have seen the gift of tongues given in worship services in other churches (I recall a very powerful instance when I went to an Assembly of God service with a friend once where the presence of God was so strong that I don't see how anyone could not have felt it). So I do know it is a valid spiritual gift. But I do think it is only given when there is a reason for it to be given, and it should not be esteemed to the exclusion of the other gifts.