To be honest, although I generally view myself as a Christian and am generally viewed as such by my peers (my apologies to the Christian community in general for that), I’ve never enjoyed church. When I was younger, the only thing I did in church was really to sit there and draw pictures of random things that had nothing whatsoever to do with the message being taught.
Don’t get me wrong, I still try and hold to Christianity and try to listen to/apply the messages, it’s just difficult. I’ve never really been much for listening to directions and applying them, especially after the fact and as anyone who’s ever had a serious go at following Christ knows it ain’t exactly what you’d call easy. But that’s not what I’m here to discuss. My dad’s in the Special Needs Ministry section at our church (for the life of me I can’t imagine why) on the staff and asked me to write this post for a meeting, so I’m going to talk about how I deal with actual church services.
For starters, I hate standing during worship. So I don’t. It’s that simple and frankly I don’t understand why anyone would make a huge deal out of it.
Second, I don’t particularly like when I’m told to greet the people standing around me. I don’t know these people. Why am I supposed to act like I have an interest in what’s going on in their lives? That would be lying – as I recall that’s a sin. I’m nothing if not brutally and savagely honest whenever possible. Yes, I get that people are expected to show an interest in the lives of others. But I’ve got enough on my own plate, thanks, so deal with it. I’ll shake your hand and say good morning but that’s it.
Thirdly, I sit in the same place every time I go to church. In the back row of the balcony. It’s a comforting feeling knowing nobody’s staring at the back of your head, to be honest. And I’ve always loved balconies. The vantage point is such that one doesn’t have to worry about people sitting in your line of sight and far enough away from the stage that you don’t go deaf during worship. Thus, when our worship leader started talking about people sitting in the same places every week, I told myself “if he tells me to get up and sit somewhere different I will walk down the aisle and beat him to death with his microphone.” He wasn’t, actually. He was talking about how people should get to know the others who sit in the same section.
Which in turn is odd. Granted I’ve never ever paid much attention to the people sitting around me, but I don’t think the same group sits up in my balcony all the time. I’ve seen that my family sits there (since I pick the seats) and that a family who’s friends with ours (if I recall their oldest is also an Aspie) sits there often if we go to the eleven o’clock service, but that’s it. Though it’s worth emphasizing that I’m not liable to pick up on this sort of thing. I mind my own business.
Then there are my issues with the Bible itself – no, I’m not reiterating my frustration with my parents’ claims to complete authority. But once I was on a forum for gifted children and someone started a thread where people shared their religious beliefs. Most of them were atheist/agnostic (they had an entire debate on the difference), one was a Zen Buddhist, and then I posted saying I’m a Christian. Whereupon I immediately got hit in the face with “I DUN WANNA BELIEVE IN A GOD WHO SAYS GAYS GO TO HELL.”
Leaving out the entirety of that particular theological cluster bomb, they then proceeded to try and prove the Bible is fake because it says pi equals three. Part of me says, “okay, you’re nitpicking, and I make that into a lifestyle choice so when I tell you you’re going overboard…yeah.” The rest goes off on a tangent and wants to know why this doesn’t apply. I still believe in the Bible being correct. That’s not likely to change. But I’d like some of my nitpicks addressed in ways other than “that isn’t important and you’re nitpicking,” because that’s dodging the question. I feel like I’d benefit from a class on the logic of the Bible or something (insofar as the Bible can be squared with logic, there’s a point where the two diverge).
Anyway, this post having to do with religion I hope I didn’t offend anybody I didn’t mean to.