Saturday, October 17, 2009

I Think I Can, I Think I Can...

I've recently noticed something about myself in relation to my having Aspergers. I tend to be someone that can be doggedly persistent about something. Where as others can be focused on something for a while and then give up, I tend to persist...and persist.

For example, whenever I've been without work, I've been dillegent in looking for work. I'm basically running like clockwork.

At church, I've noticed that others don't tend to have much hope the church will continue. Even though there are those that I think want change, because others tend to not be that interested in changing there is a sense that there is no hope and that we should just learn to die well.

Now, they could just be realistic. However, in my view, I tend to think that if there are some people that want change, then you just keep at it and ignore those who don't want to change.

In the whole conversation, I've been the one that seems to be the one that wants to damn all the naysayers and keep trying. I want to believe that God is not done with First Christian and that if we are just open to what God is saying, a miracle will happen. Even the Senior Pastor based on the evidence is not hopeful the church will survive.

Maybe they are all correct and I'm all wet.

When I was leading Community of Grace, I held on to that project with all my stregnth. I did finally give up and closed the ministry, but I still look back and think I didn't try hard enough.

I'm hardly an Pollyana. But I think because my Aspie brain is so focused, I can't really see other options. Of course that can be a bad thing. Sometimes you have to see other options and understand that what we want and hope for might not come true.

But I also think it has a good side. As I journey within mainline Protestantism, I tend to see a lot of what I would call defeatism. We look backward at the past and long for the "good 'ol days" when the pews were full. We look at our small flock and think there is no hope.

But what if the church saw things like someone with Aspergers? What if we were single-focused on doing God's will in our particular setting? What if we believed all those stories told to us about how God took all those "uncool" people like Gideon and performed a mighty deed?

My brain is wired in a way that I'm a doer. I might not be the best person socially, but I can do the work required. I really do believe with faith in God and hard work, there are still good days ahead for First Christian.

Maybe I'm an idiot, but I don't think God is done with First Christian in Minneapolis. I have to believe that God is just waiting for us to know that we still have much to give to the service of God's kingdom.

I think we can, I think we can...

1 comment:

Laura Cottington said...

I think you hit it head on and touched on a lot of things. The Aspie in you will always be a blessing in times of doubt, change, or crisis. I say that because the gift of most AS folk, is that they can focus on what is important without the emotional backlash, hindering and hold up.

Now, don't take me wrong, as we should never stereotype...but for myself, I know I am a "blue" a "feeler", and an over emotional reactor, in everything I do.

My passion drives me, but my passion can also paralyze me. All because of how I allow my emotions to control what I do.

You know, as well as I do, since living with 2 (acutally 3 lol) on the spectrum, that the biggest myth about those with AS or ASD, is that they don't have emotions. We all know that is crap. But the way it effects my family, and the science research will tell us...is that understanding others emotions at a specific time, and what their feelings reveal is a little more challenging for those on the spectrum. It is that whole "walking in one's shoes" dilema.

At a time when the church wants to die, you can still keep your eye on the prize, and that we all know, is Christ and what He calls us to be. He will reveal to you when or if it is time to place a comma, because the period never comes.

That has been our own families faith journey challenge, to not allow the toxic beliefs who believe the church is their own and not Gods. I am not saying your church does that, what I am saying is that sometimes too much emotion in Faith can take us away from the great calling. Our own emotions about what we think church should be like, instead of what God calls us to DO as His church are two entirely different things.

If you get to the comma at First, remember that is just a turn on the journey. God has always used your gifts on His time, and He will continue to do that with your open and servant heart.