A-list Hollywood star Denzel Washington just opened up about his strong Christian faith like never before when he revealed during an Instagram live chat with a pastor that he was once “filled with the Holy Ghost” during a church service in the 1980s.

Washington explained to the Pastor A.R. Benard of the Christian Cultural Center that he gave his life up to Christ three different times, and one of these occasions was described by him as a “supernatural” encounter with God.

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“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,” the 65 year-old Training Day star said of the encounter, which occurred at Bishop Charles E. Blake’s West Angeles Church of God in Christ.

“I went to church with Robert Townsend 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,'” Washington continued, according to Fox News. “I went in the prayer room and gave it up and let go and experienced something I’ve never experienced in my life.”

Washington remembered telling his mother after the service, “I felt like I was going up in the air, and my cheeks were filled.” She reportedly replied by saying, “’Oh no, that’s the devil you’re purging.’”

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“It was a supernatural, once in this lifetime experience that I couldn’t completely understand at the time,” the Academy Award winner continued. “It kept me grounded in spite of myself; I mean, I accepted it, I definitely experienced it, but I wasn’t ready to live it. I don’t know how old I was then but I wasn’t ready to live it then. I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s gone through that kind of experience.”

Even after this powerful encounter, however, Washington said he still had to work hard to maintain his devotion to God over the years. However, he has put the work in, and he recently opened up in a separate interview about what his relationship with God means to him.

“There’s never been a time where God didn’t direct, protect, and correct me,” he explained to Charisma News. “There may have been times where I was less than faithful to Him, but He had faith in me.”

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This piece originally appeared in UpliftingToday.com and is used by permission.

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