Since I am "going public", it's time to share: My family does "church at home". Now, don't go running screaming for the hills. It's not that I have a problem with other people of faith. Not at all. It is simply that PTSD has shaped my life in a myriad of soul carving, heart changing ways. In this season, the mission field God has called me to is my family.
I feel like we've gone back to our roots, discovering the beauty of gathering together in the home and loving God. And I'm closer to him now than when I was running music and children's ministry at one chapel and teaching and serving on the board at another. (Can we say over-commitment? Yes, this is how I coped while my husband was deployed.) I find that I am always connected to his heart when I walk with him, accepting the course he's plotted for my life in each individual season.
Once someone accused me of "forsaking the gathering together of the saints." (Just after I shared that I love gathering in small groups, but sometimes miss large group corporate worship- as I would if we worshipped in any number of smaller church buildings in the area). While this admonition was taken out of context (Hebrews was written to the persecuted church), she also missed the point. Home Church-ing is not about rebelling from the status quo. It's about caring for the the needs of the 'specially wrapped gifts' God has placed in my care. Not everyone has known the words that have shaped the parameters of my life: PTSD, Sensory Processing Disorder, Juvenile Diabetes, and Celiac disease. (And another I will talk about later.)
Any one of these would make church attendance challenging. (My husband can not "do" larger groups, due to PTSD.) But all together, well, at times I feel hemmed in. I used to feel limited in what we could do as a family, but now I choose to see this as one more gift from God. He's made the path very clear. If I re-frame my life lens, I will see this 'hemming in' is His protection. "Think of it as a Gift," he recently whispered. A gift that keeps me on the path to wholeness and new life.
And so, I choose to stay where He's placed me. To look to Him to sustain, and seize hope. He's given me wonderful kindred spirits as support- sojourners on the way, as we partner in plumbing the depths of His heart. My own "small group" weekly (both where I live and through the miracle of technology) to "spur me on" (Hebrews 10:24) and lift me up. To "bloom where I'm planted." And, now, the journey continues.