Going out on a limb

Going out on a limb here, don’t hate me for it. I’m only human and trying to make sense of each day, one day at a time, the same as everyone else.

I wrote a post back in June and I never shared it on Alienhippy. I was afraid of the come back, I was also afraid that people would get the wrong impression.

I just want to be very clear about this

I am NOT in any way against the Christian Church. I believe that God created us to be a family and that within a loving, accepting family of believers the true Church is an amazing and nurturing environment. I have also met MANY beautiful people within my faith. People who have loved me and accepted me with all my quirks. However, my experience since sharing my daughters diagnoses and my own struggles with Aspergers have not always been positive. We are all only human and we all fall short. We all have limitations and we all have our own way of seeing things.

I’m pretty sure that quite a few Christian Aspies will relate to this post. I’m sharing it because I really hate the thought of someone losing their faith in God because of the way some people make Him to be.

So this is the post I wrote

At 5am this morning I sat praying in bed, crying because I so wanted to feel that I could cope with going to church. Every Sunday morning I have the same conversation with myself, it goes something like this.

“Maybe this week I will be ok? Maybe I won’t absorb so much and I will be fine on Monday morning? Maybe I won’t get judged for having to distract my loops? Maybe I can find a church where I can be me? Maybe I will be understood and not expected to perform?”

And the list goes on.

I have come to terms now with the fact that most church going Christians see me as a church hopper, therefore weak in my faith. But I have found that when people don’t know me, they don’t expect anything of me. Therefore don’t judge me when I struggle to deliver what they expect.

Aspergers is so misunderstood

It’s an invisible disability and I can pass as “normal” I can keep up the pretence for quite some time. In fact I can secretly keep it up and look good, put on the show, for about three years. Then I feel so hurt because NO ONE REALLY KNOWS ME! But when I explain just who I am and how I struggle I am met with the most ridiculous statements.

Here are a few…

“Really, you look normal to me!”

“Oh I had depression for 20 years, I decided to not be depressed.”

“Well if you have decided to be Autistic then you will find excuses.”

“You need to stop reading the psychology books and get back into the theology books.”

“Your mobile is just a way of you not listening or being part of things.”

“Stop texting.” (I was actually taking notes, I have Bible online)

“ASD is not real, self discipline will soon sort that out.”

“Your problem is you take things personally, just let it go over your head.”

“You are intelligent enough not to act autistic.”

”Why do you have to be an Aspie, you weren’t one before?”

“You did so much before, why can’t you do the same now?”

“If you want to please God you will do what needs doing.”

These are just off the top of my head, the list is so much longer than this.

Now I don’t want people to get the wrong idea, I love God, I believe Jesus is the Son of God, I believe in the Christian faith, I believe the Bible is the word of God, I also believe in God’s Church.

But if I was in a wheelchair would I be expected to leave it at the door?

If I was blind, would my guide dog be unwelcome?

I can also see that we are all a long way off

I am struggling to write this because of my religious background. I feel judged before even posting it. I am judging myself on not being perfect, I feel like I could be giving the wrong impression and making the church look bad. That’s the last thing I want to do as it is nothing to do with God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit or God’s Church. It’s more to do with how we as humanity view others, ourselves and our beliefs.

Where do we put our value? What is our treasure?

Is it religious self righteousness? Perfectionism? Tradition?

Or do we listen to our hearts and God’s still small voice?

Faith? Hope? Love? Compassion? Empathy? Grace?

I see a pattern as I read my Bible.

Do you see it too?

Jesus went from town to town preaching the good news. He went into the places of worship and each time he was met with mostly hostility because he challenged a tradition. He preached about unconditional love and the kingdom of God in the hearts of little children.

He sat on hill sides and in boats. I imagine him sitting under trees with children playing their games around Him.

Jesus went from town to town. I find that interesting?

Does that mean He was a church hopper too?

Galatians 5:22-26

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

 

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Aspieness…is my habit!

Image found on Google

Hello my lovely Bloggy friends,

Quite a few things have been going on in Alienhippy corner over the last few months. One of the main things that I have been holding onto and helping myself with is being authentic, being the original me against all odds. I was praying the other day and God reminded me of something very unusual but also very healing for me. I thought I’d share about this and pass on a little bit more of the inside workings of my Alienhippy mind.

Let’s go back in time, I love time travel.

Now…we are at my Mom and Dad’s home with some of their friends. We are all eating, laughing, singing, and having fun. These friends of the family are all male and part of the Franciscan order. They have taken a vow of poverty and my Mom and Dad see them as brothers and very often will have them stop for dinner.

One of the brothers is my sisters best friend and he loves kids, he has a gift of being a natural teacher. My little *CAL is sat singing nursery rhymes with him and *AJ is chatting his head off.

The brothers do manual work helping in the local community and the only pay they receive is kindness shown by those who understand who they are.

Jump forward a few years, after my Mom’s funeral.

We had a small get together after the service and quite a few of Mom’s work friends, neighbours and distant relatives came back to the house. Me and my sister were playing Mom’s favourite music and remembering who she was. People were friendly but quiet, we understood this and was just going with the flow.

Now this is where I see a similarity

Mom’s friends, her true friends, those who knew her best, knew her spiritually. Those who were there for her while she was ill and in a wheel chair arrived later as they knew what would happen. Three Monks and two vicars, all wearing what Monks and vicars wear. I saw Mom’s friends, others saw Habits and Dog Collars and the room cleared pretty quickly. I mean you could cut the tension with a knife. I remember giggling and saying to the one brother, “Whoops brother *T you cleared the room we can dance now!” and he said, “It’s the dress it puts them off…giggle!”

Since taking off the mask I have noticed this

When in my confidence I tend to scare people away, I don’t know why when all I want to do is love and accept them and be myself. So I have decided that it must be my invisible habit. But those who do truly love and accept all that is me, get to know the many me’s there are.

I have mastered many personas, I have learned to imitate those I have respected. Each one of them has given me something special that will always be a part of me. I know how to not get rejected, I know how to act. But if the only way to stay part of the norm is to live a false life then I don my habit and wear it with pride. Autism has a way of sorting the wheat from the chaff, I feel safe with those who accept me for me.

Yesterday we had a massive problem to sort out

My Dad is Autistic and cannot read, he was in a mess and there is only me, my sister and my Mom’s little sister who really know who my Dad is. We know how he hurts and we know how alone he feels.

While standing in an office about to deal with the mess my Dad had been tricked into. (Vulnerable adult and way too trusting) My sister leans over to me, gives me a firm yet loving look and whispers, “Remember, we are Neuro-typical today!”

With this I nod and say, “Ok sis!”

My sister is the one who has to sort out all paperwork for our family, she deals with all the difficulties that being dyslexic puts onto both my Dad and me. I own my dyslexia, I see how it can be used to seek the positive, I see how when in the right frame of mind it is a gift. My Dad has been ridiculed his whole life and will never tell anyone he struggles in this way because of the bullying and emotional torture he has lived through.

I can act Neuro-typical, but it’s not who I am.

Every mimicked part of my being is also a little bit of me, I’m learning to merge them so I’m not so intense and extreme in certain areas of my life. I was reminded of a song I used to sing as a child, the lyrics and the video really do capture a special part of my Me-ness.

Love and hugs.

Lisa. xx 🙂

Galatians 3:26-29 (GNT)

It is through faith that all of you are God’s children in union with Christ Jesus. You were baptized into union with Christ, and now you are clothed, so to speak, with the life of Christ himself. So there is no difference between Jews and Gentiles, between slaves and free people, between men and women; you are all one in union with Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are the descendants of Abraham and will receive what God has promised.

Holding my breath, hovering over publish.

Hello my lovely Bloggy friends,

I’m going on a bit of a rant here because I REALLY need to get this out. I’m sort of holding my breath about this post. But my blog is “a place where I can be me!” So here goes…

Hebrews 10:23-25 (NLV)

  • Let us hold on to the hope we say we have and not be changed.
  • We can trust God that He will do what He promised.
  • Let us help each other to love others and to do good.
  • Let us not stay away from church meetings. Some people are doing this all the time.
  • Comfort each other as you see the day of His return coming near.

I was reading my Bible this afternoon and I stopped to ponder on these two verses from Hebrews 10. I broke them down into points, then prayed through each point thinking what God might be showing me, how I can give this to God and see what He is helping me to see.

The point that challenged me the most was point 4.

“Let us not stay away from church meetings. Some people are doing this all the time.”

Those that are closest to me know that every Sunday morning I want to be at church. I want so desperately to be part of a fellowship. I want to break bread and sing to God with God’s family of believers. Every Sunday morning I feel hurt at not feeling accepted for who I am. My whole life I have had to imitate and people please to be accepted and now I have just about had enough.

I haven’t been to church for a few weeks now,

I’m trying to find a church to go to. I really don’t feel that I want to go to a church where I am explained as having “This and That Syndrome” even if it is said in joke.

There are some very lovely people, but just having one person voice this in a public place has made me not want to return. Also knowing that this is how I am explained to others makes me see that my little girl is expected to conform and not be who she is created to be.

I’m not the Lisa they knew, or thought they knew.

I took off my mask, I stopped acting!

I realised that I didn’t want my little girl to have to feel like an actress, a performer every time she went out of the house. I started to advocate for my child, for both my children and in doing this I started to accept who I am. I started to actually be the real me. I started to say “no” to doing things that I knew would cause me to shutdown later. I started to understand that the over stimulation of certain people or environments caused me confusion. I started to understand that I absorb great amounts of information both positive and negative, not really being able to process what is applicable, so becoming totally overwhelmed. On some Monday mornings I was only able to do routine things. I just wanted to zone out and stare at the telly all day. This was not good for me or my family.

I am learning to self regulate

I no longer allow people to bombard me with their idea of what they think I should be doing, or how I should be acting. I know that there are people who will not understand what I am saying here. There will also be those that judge me on however I try to word this.

I would just like to say, that’s fine, you are entitled to your opinion.

I serve a loving Father God who sees the heart.

People see what they want to see, and they hear what they want to hear.

All of my life I have tried so hard to be accepted,

The truth is my brain is wired in an Autistic way and I find a lot of things difficult. I have pushed myself to fit, to conform. This has been like self abuse at times. I was made by one particular church to feel that I was wretched because I found it so hard to talk to strangers and to be in busy places. I found ways of doing these things though because I thought at the time that God wouldn’t love me if I didn’t do them. I was young, vulnerable and naive. It is SO very wrong to put this onto a person, to make anyone feel they are unlovable if they don’t do. If they don’t meet the mark.

Religion says do, Jesus said DONE!

We should serve God with thanks giving and a grateful heart.

Autism is a communication disorder.

Just because some of us are very verbal, doesn’t mean we are keeping up or filtering what is going on. I have had a Sunday sermon still looping in my head on a Friday.

I am not deliberately being awkward I am listening to what my body is telling me and finding ways to do things so I can keep doing them and not go into hiding again. I have decided NOT to fight against my brain but to work with it, listen to the still quiet voice that explains to me how I can be me in Christ. How I can feel the freedom that Christ brings!

Do I want to be at church on Sundays? Yes, I do!

Will I do what God tells me? Yes, I may struggle but I live by God’s grace.

Do I want to be made to feel that I am wrong, I am awkward and I am making excuses?

No. This is not loving and is not building me up. I will not be made to feel this way anymore.

I read this comment today on Fi’s blog.

If you have a Spectrumite routinely tuning out in class, it is because the mental effort required to connect is too much. Spacing out is a way of letting go of a connection that is too hard to maintain. Think of it as trying to hold on to a weight, so heavy that your hands keep getting tired, until you finally have to let go. Only when your hands are rested can you pick it back up. No amount of saying, “Pick it up” or “Stay on task” will change that fact.

Now, imagine that you are being asked to hold something heavy on each finger – that is the experience of multitasking. That is what’s required when listening, making eye contact and watching body language at the same time. Asking this of Spectrumites is psychological torture and socially selfish of anyone who requires it as a condition for being in a relationship with one of us.

Thank you Sparrow for sharing this in your comment. 🙂 xx

Image found on Facebook

As a child I had a wonderful imaginary friend

She would meet me in a secret garden and we would play on a swing that hung from a large tree. We walked and talked, we giggled and played. We picked wild flowers on the side of a river. I never had to pretend to be anyone, I was able to just be me.

When I was made to feel wrong at school, she stood behind me and whispered all the nice things she knew about me. She set a standard of how I should have been treated by friends. She set a standard of how I should have allowed people to treat me. I wouldn’t allow my kids to be talked to in this way, so I am not going to allow myself to be spoken to like this either.

I share so I can move forward.

I share because I know others go through similar things and I know I love it when I read another person’s journey and say, “YES…that is just how I feel!”

All people make mistakes,

It’s not a reflection of God, it’s not a reflection of Church, it’s a reflection of a person hurting inside, or hurting themselves. Someone dealing with their own baggage and insecurities.

Ignorance is everywhere, and arrogance hurts friendships.

We can’t change people, but we can change who we chose to be around.

I know who my friends are, they are the ones who pray for me, who whisper kind things to my heart and hold me accountable to God in their love for me.

Church is the body of Christ, God’s family on Earth. Not a building.

Love and hugs.

Lisa. xx 🙂

“I believe, help my unbelief!”

Hello my lovely Bloggy friends,

I received my online Bible devotional this morning and the title made me to cringe. I have been following this Christian devotional every week day, for some time, and I totally enjoy the messages shared. Thankfully I have been gaining insight from these devotionals long enough to know that this reaction was not something I should be having. I realised that it must be a trigger word that my past experiences have caused within me.

As an Aspie I can take things literally

Only with age, LOTS of thinking and listening through my loops, have I learned that things/people are not always the way they seem. My many loops are constantly questioning and planning…that’s on my good days. On my bad days they are accusing and taunting me with words and memories of those who have not loved or accepted me for who I am.

The title of the devotional is, “Becoming more fruitful.”

Not really something that should make a Christian cringe.

Let me explain my understanding of why this happened.

My first reaction was to close my email and not read it AT ALL.

My heart called out to God with the words,

“Please God I can’t cope with the pain of any more people,

I don’t want to become more fruitful.”

I can giggle about this now but this morning this was very real and all confused in my head. I wasn’t understanding God’s word for me but hearing the words of those in positions of authority from when I was in a religious sect.

I opened up the devotional and read the following

John 15

The Vine and the Branches

 1 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

   5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

I then pondered on what the Bible says is the fruit of the Spirit.

Galatians 5:22-26

New International Version 1984 (NIV1984)

 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

Then I allowed the replay of my past

I allowed myself to relive this visual, and it really hurt. I relived the interpretation and this time I KNEW it was not the truth. It was just another person following a doctrine that had been given to her from another. I know I also passed this understanding on to those that I believed God had put in my care. This kind of religious belief causes so much confusion, especially to those who are hurting, vulnerable and seeking for truth. Those who want to see good and trust too easily.

When you grow up feeling totally alien and misunderstood

Not knowing why you can’t fit, and not understanding why life is so complicated and people hurt you so deeply all the time. Then someone offers you answers and they seem to know what they are talking about. It is so very easy to just follow.

In this sect I was very good at imitating those in leadership

I believed in my heart that this was my calling. My obsessive Aspie ways and my need to know, pushed me to seek out the best ways to fit, to be accepted in a group of “very happy people.”

Only when it was put on me that I was responsible for the so called “spiritual growth” of those put in my care did I start to retreat/shutdown and eventually meltdown. I suffered total burnout from the constant pretence and plastic smiles.

I am very open and honest by nature, so in this environment I got heavily challenged constantly and rebuked quite often. I have always been a person who wants to please others, so I obeyed and submitted to those I saw as my leaders, I believed they were chosen by God. Also a lot of submission scriptures were twisted to the gain of those who used them.

Being fruitful in this particular church

Meant…You were mature enough spiritually to look after/oversee large amounts of people. You had proven that you could go out and find people who you would convert to this belief. This also meant you were expected to give a daily account for anything you might be doing that doesn’t fit with this particular doctrine, interpretation of scripture. Also give account for those you had in your group.

So I can see a trigger word now…”fruitful”

I wonder how many more there are?

A vulnerable Aspie looking after vulnerable people and being told to push them, using scripture, to be more productive. Eventually when I did snap, when I did refuse to do what I was told to do. I was seen as struggling and weak, rebellious a fall away and my group was distributed to others.

I can see now that this was totally God

At the time though it broke my heart. I went straight to my Bible and really got stuck in.

After studying scripture for myself, not for others. When I was then told what to do I already had my own conviction. The damage was done though because much of the Bible had now got a slant and reading it after leaving this church was impossible. I spent 4 years not being able to read the one book that gives me comfort. It took a lot of prayer and my Mom’s faith, her unconditional love and acceptance to bring me through this and still I would not trust anyone who said they loved God.

In the sect that I was part of, following its teachings. The word fruitful was twisted and used to praise and raise up those who brought great numbers of people to church. We had cranked the streets and been very persuasive in our choice of words. I will say when I was doing this I did believe, whole heartedly, that I was doing God’s work. I totally felt that what I was doing was right and I was helping people. I know that there are some wonderful and very sincere people in these type of sects. However mankind has its tendency to put power where it should not be, and raise up the wrong ideas.

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness,

faithfulness, gentleness and self-control are the fruit of the spirit.

They are born in us through acceptance of God’s love, mercy and grace. With these we can share His love and our love with those in our lives. Also we naturally share our faith and love with those who are seeking and listening for Him who brings light into the darkness.

It’s NOT about Bible bashing and street cranking for me.

I’m an Aspie, it never was! God created me this way and He knows me better than I know myself. He saw my heart when I pushed myself, WAY out of my comfort zone and into crowds of people. I trusted He would guide me and lead me and keep me safe…I was terrified, but I did what I thought I had to do.  I didn’t understand that God loves me unconditionally, because I felt worthless. I didn’t understand that I don’t have to please Him, just love Him back and accept His sacrifice.

My thoughts while praying today were,

The fruit when ripe drops from the tree and it is scattered; some fruit is carried away by animals and buried. It rots away and the seed deep inside germinates and grows roots. It remains hidden, resting, feeding. It is covered, sheltered while its roots dig down deep and then it starts to emerge, it grows. It blooms and blossoms and looks magnificent. Then when that tree is mature, healthy and ready it will bear fruit and nourish that fruit until the fruit is ready to be picked or to fall.

We all have dead branches, and pruning can be painful at times.

Sometimes it’s a case of finding those hidden branches, the things in our past that we don’t always see. Then allowing the healing through tears to water and feed the seed of truth and freedom.

I think this Bible devotional, that I nearly didn’t read, turned out to be pretty fruitful for me.

Love and hugs.

Lisa. xx 🙂

My lesson off Mr Sea Gull

Hello my lovely bloggy friends,

This post is going to be a lot about my faith. I’m telling you now so you have the opportunity to click off if you are not interested in the Alienhippy’s personal walk with Jesus. I’m kind like that you see, it comes down to me once being in a religious sect and having my sin thrown at me and the Bible rammed up my nose. There might be an occasional scripture to read too, I’ll see how it goes with my babble. So that will mean clicking on the links and actually reading the Bible.

“Ooooo, are we REALLY brave enough to do that Lisa???”

I think so little voice, thanks… but shut up.

So today is Sunday and I went to Church.

Those who follow my blog will know that some weeks I can’t always cope with Church.

I can find the environment FAR too over stimulating and then crash on the Monday, this is not good when you have two Aspie kids to get to school. But today I knew I would be fine.

Now this may seem a bit strange to those who don’t know me, or understand about how Aspergers affects me. I find Church easier to cope with if I turn up a little late, and sit at the back. I know God doesn’t have a problem with this, but I know some people do…I’ll be honest, I’m REALLY past caring what people think of me with my walk as a Christian. They don’t have to live inside my head, they don’t know my heart and they don’t know my life either. Those who know, love and accept me know the exact reasons why I do this, and I’ll leave it at that. 😉 xx

Anyways, the Church Sermon was BANG ON!

*Annette* was preaching, I love it when she preaches she is from a Pentecostal background and is now an Anglican Priest. She is so very gentle and loving in her ways.

Her sermon was from 1 Peter 2:2-10, and I thought GREAT I’m into the letters (Epistles) I have been getting  LOADS from 1 Peter 1 in my personal Bible study. So I got out my dinky note pad, it’s palm size everyone was looking at me when I had a bigger one (Anglican Church remember).

“Errrrrgh… the eyes…stop looking at me!” as my *AJ used to shout in pubs while eating.

Giggle, I’m too naughty to be a Christian really, it’s just the way I’m made, I like a good old giggle.

God gets me, good job really!

*Annette* preached about “ALONENESS” and how Peter was addressing the Church on being Aliens and Strangers in this world. (Cue music from the Twilight Zone…D, d, d, derr, d, d, d, derr) hehehe

I won’t tell you all of the sermon because I got SO MUCH out of it, it will be aiding my Bible study for the rest of the week.

But I will tell you about what happened after the service.

Some time ago I made a decision

This decision was to avoid ANY form of Christian leadership, unless God tells me otherwise. I have found, in the past, when I became involved in any type of leadership role, I got distracted from keeping my faith simple. (This is just me, the way I am and the struggles I go through)

Jesus said in Luke’s Gospel, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.  I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

I have to keep things simple it’s the only way I can stay close to God. It’s also the only way I stay on top of my day to day life. I get too involved and then it loops and takes over ALL of my thoughts. Many people refuse to accept this as a reason for not being more involved, but at the Church I attend some people do listen to what I say.

I also made a decision that I would NOT allow myself to imitate Church leaders. I would see their Christ-like qualities, acknowledge that God works through them, but always look to Jesus.

The sermon really spoke to me, I found myself wanting to tell *Annette*

I know I have this tendency to want to talk about God a lot, and this can cause me to chase the preacher around the hall wanting to know more. So I prayed about it during communion and asked God to bring *Annette* to me if I NEEDED to talk to her. Well, yes He did that alright, she came and sat at my table during coffee. Great, you are all thinking! Lisa gets to chat about God with someone really friendly and over coffee too. It’s like her Aspie dream come true.

So what goes and happens, I freeze… that’s what, it’s what always happens. So I start messing with my Blackberry and start kicking myself inside. Having my practise, rehearsed, imaginary conversation at what I would say if only I were “normal” and my brain could keep up in a group conversation.

I looked up and she was looking straight at me.

She gave me a look, you know the one that says, “I know you want to say something to me Lisa!” I’m not frightened of *Annette’s eyes, she has very kind eyes, it was just everyone else at the table. But I managed to speak and I said something like this.

“I know that ALONENESS you speak of, it can be all consuming some days. I don’t know if it’s my Autism or if it’s my Christianity. Maybe it’s a combination of both. I know when I’m at the depths of my pit, I feel like I’m scratching at darkness. I’m screaming inside for someone to give me a helping hand, toss me a rope or pass down a ladder. I pace around in circles and my mind races with frantic and paranoid thoughts. It’s only when I’m curled up in a ball in my conservatory, rocking and crying out to God, that I then realise, even in the depths of loneliness and despair, Jesus is with me and knows about isolation, rejection and aloneness. Then I realise that God’s love is what I can climb out through. I’m never really alone.

After Church I sat down the reza.

I watched a windsurfer, he kept falling off his board every time he tried to turn against the wind. I also watched a Sea Gull hovering and resting on the wind beneath his wings. The Gull was using what he has been given as a bird, to maintain a stillness in a gusting wind. The trees, the grass, the tall May flowers, the water and the windsurfer were all moving the being tossed around. But this Gull was Still and trusting in his ability of flight.

I’m an Aspie, I’m also a Christian.

Aloneness…is NOT loneliness, it can be a choice. I have close friendships with very few people, and I am SO very content with those few friendships. It’s only when I look to what is seen as the “norm” what the world tells us we SHOULD have. Or when I’m too concerned by what people may think of me, that I fall back into my pit. I think I need to look more at who God created me to be, and less at what the world wants me to be, and has conformed me into being. Then maybe I can use what God has given me and learn to rest in my own stillness.

These are the reading from our service this morning for anyone who wants to read them.

1 Peter 2:2-10

John 14:1-14

Acts 7:55-60

Have a great week!

Love and hugs everyone. xx 🙂

This means something to me!

Hello my lovely bloggy friends,

Early one Saturday morning in 2005

I got on my mountain bike and rode the 30 minute bike ride to a neighbouring Church. I was settled in my parish Church the Church that my Mom had worshipped in for the last 3 years of her life. The vicar there had told me of a course, that he felt would help me, after the Spiritual abuse I had been through in the religious sect I had given my heart to, for 4 years of my life.

It was hard for me to go somewhere new

At this point in my life I hadn’t really done a lot without my Mom. She had been the person I knew I could trust, after my homeless 12 months and divorce. Then also the religious sect and losing my faith, it had all taken a lot out of me.

But I hadn’t got my Mom anymore, however my Mom had given me a wonderful gift.

She passed on the seed of faith.

SO… I knew that God would help me.

Well it was early Saturday morning

My brakes squealed as I stopped at the locked doors of this Church.

It didn’t matter to me that it was closed I just needed to see where it was and prepare my mind for entering a new place of worship.

I had my face pushed up the glass, just like a little kid looking in a cake shop.

I was balancing on my tip toes, my bike is too big for me, when an elderly gentleman opened the door and said, “Would you like to see inside?”

He showed me around and made me a cup of tea and I found out that he was going to be on the course too.

I knew this was God’s way of helping me to ACTUALLY turn up, I now had a kind face to look for.

Every Wednesday morning for an academic school year

I attended this course. I made friends with the Vicar, his lovely wife (who sadly passed away last year after fighting cancer for quite some time) I made friends with *KB, the amazingly kind elderly gentleman who made me feel so comfortable. Also his wife *SB, who has welcomed me into her home so many times, and been a constant reminder of my Nan, who I miss so desperately.

On this course I met so many people,

All Christians with a story to tell. It was wonderful for me and so reassuring of God’s love that even after losing my faith for 4 years I could be welcomed back into the arms of God and the family of believers. The scriptures were re-taught without the twisting. I was encouraged and helped to seek who I am in Christ.

I don’t always go to Church, but I do always read my Bible.

There are times when being at Church is just too much for me. I understand now why this happens.

Knowing that I am “somewhere on the spectrum” makes a big difference.

But in the last 6 years I have considered this Church my second home.

Some of the people here are like a second family to me, they probably don’t even realise it.

I grew up attending Church in a 1960’s building,

It was a funny little Church but somewhere I felt safe. The Vicar there taught me to play guitar and he was one of my Mom’s best friends.

My Mom was a Sunday school teacher, so it’s familiar for me to be in this type of Church.

This morning my *CAL got up excited

What was she excited about…going to Godly Play.

When we got to Church we were hit with one MASSIVE surprise.

Over the last few days we have had rain. The Church roof couldn’t take it.

Most British 1960’s Church buildings are finding that the roofing is coming to the end of its life.

They are in bad need of repair or re-roofing. Our Church fund just can’t stretch that far.

Our Church service was held in our function hall and our elderly congregation had to sit on very low blue plastic chairs.

We had a lovely service none the less but there was an air of sadness too, we really just don’t know how we can fix this problem.

So I’m doing all I can by letting everyone who reads my blog, who cares for me, know this…

“This Church building and it’s congregation means something to me!”

I have been through quite a lot, and this Church is where I feel I can be me.

I am accepted here for who I am as a person. I know I am loved by many members of the congregation.

This is our meeting place where we can break bread with one another, and share God’s love.

We all have our own way of hearing God, and we all have our own way of sharing that too.

What I ask is if you pray then please can you add this to your prayer list.

We need our Church building, we need a new roof!

Thank you.

Love, hugs, blessings and peace to you all.

Lisa. xx 🙂

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Some thoughts from Easter Sunday.

Hello my lovely bloggy friends,

I had to remind myself today what my blog is about.

It’s “A place where I can be me!”

So I’m going to share this here and it will explain a little bit more about the Alienhippy.

I go to a traditional Church, but I don’t consider myself traditional.

I do find the routine quite helpful with my Aspieness. I have tried to be traditional, to fit in, but to be perfectly honest I find trying to fit in WAY too draining. So now when I’m at Church I do what helps me or I don’t feel like going.

I find with my Aspergers that most GOOD sermons can be totally overwhelming. I find I record them in my head and then beat myself up with them trying to remember everything the Vicar said and how he said it. What he actually meant and what God was trying to say to me. Did I get it all or as usual miss the most important bits…..giggle.

For a while, I had a big break from Church

God taught me through ways that were best for me. He reached me through animals, nature and children. I do however see a need to be part of a fellowship. To break bread with other believers.

Taking notes is my best way of coping.

Everything that I hear as helpful to myself I write down for my own personal Bible study. This I have at home in my own environment where I can be totally myself.

I get quite a few funny looks having a note pad and Bible open in the Church that I attend.

Think Songs of Praise…BBC, and you will understand why!

It’s only a small congregation and as well as my note taking I KNOW I’m a fidget. 🙂

But you know…I’m totally over it!

And it’s the best Church I have found for me so far.

I know God knows me, accepts me and totally loves me….so everyone who thinks I’m a little strange, eccentric or from a fundamentalist background can think what they want.

What I got from the Easter message.

Please remember that these are just my own personal notes to help me.

The Gospel reading was from John 20:1-18.

Our Vicar started his sermon explaining about a maze he and his young daughter got lost in. It was made of hedges and he thought he’d be able to complete it in no time at all. He was wrong and got totally confused and lost all sense of direction.

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This is taken from my notes.

This is just a small amount of my original notes.

I don’t feel that I want to share everything.

I’m sure you all will understand that.

Jesus used those who had an open heart.

He used those who no one listened to, those of disgrace.

He used those who were despised and rejected.

What is my response to the Risen Jesus?

Do I want to seek the will of God for my life?

Then I need to ask and let God filter in.

God wants to help me, not judge me, we are all His children.

He already knows that I’m not going to be perfect.

All the bad things, they happened to Jesus too!

I can enter into them with God and find a way through.

Or…I can chose to walk away from them.

The choice is mine, I have been given free will.

If I chose to face them, I chose to go to my own personal Jerusalem.

To drink my own cup, and to carry my own cross.

I also then need to walk into the empty tomb believing.

Not stand outside wondering….. or in fear.

No….I need to walk in with faith and trust, believing in the deep mystery of Christ.

Being inspired by the empty tomb.

As Christians we are fascinated by the empty tomb.

The resurrection is in our lives.

We carry His unconditional love and ultimate sacrifice in our hearts.

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Ok….this is what I will be pondering on this week. This will cut down on the many, many loops that could have come from it. Writing down what is relevant to me slows down my thinking and also stops me recording everything. I trust that God opens my ears to what I need to hear.

To finish this off I just have to add my FAVOURITE and most inspiring visual.

I think I’ve used it before, but I don’t care, I just LOVE it!