Special Needs Feedback from Orlando

Good morning, Susan ~ It was a joy to spend some time talking with you at Children’s Pastors’ Conference. 

Let me tell you what happened right after you left the KidzMatter booth. The book [you gave me] was on the little table next to me. [An associate who was also at the conference] has an autistic daughter—his oldest daughter of three. She is 7 years old now and until about 6 weeks ago was non-verbal.  She’s also been sporadically and unpredictably aggressive and physical. She’s never warmed up to me, along with most people, and because of my fragile physical condition, her outbursts could easily hurt me.  

The lady who was watching the girls during CPC brought them by the booth while things were slow. I looked up and said, “Hi, Luci.” She responded and very calmly walked over to me. She handed me her glasses and wanted me to hang them through my necklace, so I did. She thought that was funny, and actually half-smiled. She took my necklace and shook it so it sounded like jingle bells. I let her shake it while I sang “Jingle Bells.”

Then, I asked her if she would like for me to read her a book … that I had a wonderful book with beautiful pictures. She came closer and watched as I opened the cover. I pointed to a picture of a child holding a thumbs-up and said, “Can you do that, Luci?” She mirrored the photo with her thumb up. I pointed to a child holding up their hand and said, “Can you do that, Luci?” and she mirrored the photo. I turned to a page where the little boy is playing with the water fountain and she opened her mouth several times as if she were trying to take a drink. As I asked her questions, she started responding with words—words that I’ve never heard her speak, and I’ve known her since birth. It was a precious time with her.

When I got home, my son said, “What was the highlight of CPC?” And I said, “It was the time I got to spend with Luci.” 

Just thought you’d like to know how God used your book as a bridge to help a little girl who is just learning how to respond to her world.

In His incredible joy,


Tina Houser, Executive Editor, KidzMatter Magazine
January 20, 2014