Sundays with Pastor Sheets

Are you bedridden or housebound? Have you ever had to stay in bed for a long period of time?

Thanks to my current combo of meds, I can get out of bed most days. Sometimes, though, I wake up feeling like I got run over by a Mack truck, which reminds me of my early bedridden days before my POTS and neurocardiogenic syncope were treated.

“Really? You CAN’T get out of bed? I’m sure you can, if you try harder,” some might think. (In fact, I sometimes think that about myself!)

Here is what I feel like, bedridden. My limbs are all extremely heavy. If I try to sit up, the world swirls, and my blood pressure drops dangerously low. If I “try harder” and manage to sit up, I have to support my heavy head by leaning on my hand. My brain definitely can’t compute 42 x 42, as my son asked me to this morning (oh, wait… can I ever do that?), and I might zone in and out. My pulse pounds in my ears. I don’t have strength or energy to take a shower, even seated on my handy bath seat (and after three days, both Lazarus and I stinketh). I am freezing cold on this hot summer day. My whole head feels like it’s fallen asleep (pins and needles from forehead to chin), and I feel like the flu has come to stay. Nausea is keeping me company, and stimuli (lights, noise, conversation) overwhelm me.

Being bedridden isn’t tons of fun, but being bedridden on a Sunday can be quite discouraging. Sunday is a special day for me, because I can gather with others who share my faith in Jesus. Even if on a typical week, I can’t stand for songs or sing all the verses, due to dysautonomia, I can participate with my heart and mind. I love being spiritually fed by the sermon, and it is good for me to be with others in my community of faith.

So, what is a bedridden body to do? Or maybe you’re not bedridden or housebound, but you’re sick today, or you need to stay home with a special-needs child, an aging parent, or someone else who needs your help.

Thanks to 2014 technology, one can easily listen to sermons anytime. What I prefer on Sunday mornings, though, is to worship with a congregation in real time when I’m stuck at home. If you can live-stream on a computer, phone, or tablet, you can join in with a body of Christians with whom you’ll spend eternity, even if you don’t know their names just yet.

Here are just two of many churches whose full services you can “attend” from the comfort of your own bed on a given Sunday:

Tenth Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia: Sundays at 8:50 and 10:50 a.m. (EST)

Park Cities Presbyterian Church, Dallas: Sundays at 8, 9:30, and 11 a.m. (CST)

You also may have services broadcast on your local TV stations. And remember, if you are in Christ, He is with you always.

Do you have a livestream church service you enjoy? What service would you visit in person if you had the chance?

Amazed he signed up for this

Mark and I were married fifteen years ago today. We never thought he’d be pushing my 36-year-old self around in a wheelchair, but sure enough, over bumpy sidewalks we went on a quick anniversary date for iced coffee and tea while our kids were at a pool party this morning.

Turns out, he signed up for this, and I am so grateful. Fifteen years ago, we both signed up for richer and poorer, better and worse, sickness and health– and we’ve experienced all of the above during these past years. I am even more grateful we both serve a covenant-keeping God, One who upholds His covenant to be our God and to have us as His people, even as we turn away again and again.

Mark and I are both promise-breakers. Through the Holy Spirit, though, we also have the possibility of keeping promises and the assurance of receiving forgiveness when we break them.

Today, I celebrate God’s gift of Mark, who truly is patient and kind, who keeps no record of wrongs, who does not boast, who is not irritable, who loves me with a love that does not quit. I am blessed among women.