About the Author

LaCinda Halls is a speaker, writer, and teacher passionate about sharing the love of God for people of all ability levels. She and her husband of 20-plus years have a college-aged daughter and a mainstreamed nonverbal son who can pass gas on demand and is on the autism spectrum.

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& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


      • LaCinda,
        Our 42 year son has social anxiety disorder and lives in cars that we give him so he’s not on the street. He’s really quite intelligent and takes good care of himself. He’s able to work part-time hours only for which we’re thrilled about. He’s lived like this for 10 years. We’re in constant prayer for the Lord to open up housing for him. At this point he’s not even sure he wants to leave the safety of his vehicle for a proper roof over his head. This happens a lot with homeless folks.
        Keep up the great work being mom to a beautifully created son. You are a treasure LaCinda!

        • Oh my. Your navigation of life with your son touched my heart. We cover our children with capital P.R.A.Y.E.R.S. all the days of our lives, don’t we? You’re flexibility and trust in GOD is a LIGHT to me. Thank you.

  1. A beautiful and uplifting story! Everyone has a light within to be shared with the rest of the world! You are doing a wonderful job Mom! Praise God for the beauty that He makes to shine out to others!

  2. As a retired teacher of kids with special needs I make it a point to stop and talk to children in wheelchairs, remark how cute a son or daughter is or simply wave and encourage, compliment parents who are doing the ‘right’ but hard thing in a retail establishment when it might be difficult because of all of the eyes on. I always hoped it had value….and hoping I might have filled up an emotional tank along the way.

  3. Dear LaCinda……What a touching story and I feel that the older man that came to you was from God to show you that not all people understand your journey. All of us have to thank God that if we have children, they don’t have these kind of problems. People tend to forget that there are so many different journeys that people like you go through and these people don’t even tell God how thankful they are for their children. Thank you so much for your message. It was inspiring and showed us all, just exactly how powerful God is. Have a Blessed Day………..Betsy Basile

  4. Thomas is blessed to have you as his mom as you are blessed to have him as your son. Thank you for sharing this inspiring story, LaCinda! I praise God for how He speaks to each one of us through His Word.

  5. Love the reading today. I know someone in our family with autism. You know they can be so cleaver and so bright plus so loving. They make you stop and say as with my life as Christian. I must get my life in routine each day. Like my family member with autism. They like routine. They like things done each day the same way. If you change that with them. They get that it gets them that they find it hard to get back to routine they where doing for so long each day. You throw them. They get cross with you in a nice way. So that really speaks to me to do with my Christian life with God. I am to have the same routine like austim people. Have a good routine with God every day and not change it. By spending time with God and reading his word and praying each day. Not get that I get so busy I can’t do that. I get I don’t have that proper time for God in my life rushing to spend time with God. Not spending the proper time with God each day reading his word and praying. Then I can get out of that routine. Of spending the proper time with God. Then God get cross in a nice way. As then I so busy and that comes first. I don’t have the time to spend properly with God reading his word and praying. I have to remember God has the proper time to spend time with me. He never forgets to do that. So why should I be so busy that I don’t do the same. Never forget to not get so busy that I don’t have that time. So that what austim people have taught me. To with my walk with God as Christian. Thank you Lacinda for this brilliant word. Love it. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little Enniskillen Co.Fermanagh N.Ireland. Xx

    • I love that you try to keep your “God appointments” when the busyness of life tries to push in. That’s hard for me too.

      And your family member on the autism spectrum sounds delightful.

      • Yes my family member with the autism is lovely so she is. But you have to keep routine with her. Thank you for your comment to me. Lacinda. I can’t wait to hear more daily reading from you again. As I love what you wrote today. I love all you said about your son. He sounds lovely too. He is a blessing to to you both you and your Husband in God eyes. As God loves us no matter what. As we are all fearfully and wonderful made in God eyes. That a blessing to us. To know that no matter what. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little Enniskillen Co.Fermanagh N.Ireland. Xx

  6. Thank you for this beautiful reminder and thank you for doing the right thing. You ARE doing a good job, Mom. And thank God for that lovely man in the grocery store.

  7. Thank you for sharing this. And for sharing Thomas’s light. God bless you and encourage you on your journey. ❤️

  8. I love that verse in Luke! And while I often think of shining the light God has given me, I don’t usually think of “bearing witness to the value of others”. Maybe not a great thing to admit, but certainly something I will be more aware of doing now! My heart breaks for the loneliness in this world, and what a great way to reach out to anyone who is struggling – bearing witness.
    Thank you for sharing your story today. I think spinning pens is a mighty fine way to spend time at the grocery store!

  9. Thank you for sharing your beautiful and authentic story today. I love how the Lord shows up when we least expect it. His timing is always perfect as is the messenger He uses. He sees us and loves always.

  10. LaCinda I love this “grocery store story”. Thank you for sharing xoxox. My youngest sister Janelle is deaf and 56 yrs old. She has always lived at home. Never married…although she wanted a baby…and only drove for about a second. It was very hard on my parents at first. My Mom went back to school and became a special education teacher. Then our family learned so much and thrived! Janelle is hilarious and so are many of her friends. She too never changes her schedule! Drives my Mom crazy…hahaha
    I remember times people walking away from her as if she was contagious and other times someone would just start signing. One kid asked “does she cry with her hands”? Bless his heart!
    I think when God places these “special” people in our lives, we have a “special” compassion that’s a bit softer than most….and a huge sense of humor… at least our family does!!!

    • We can choose to laugh or cry, and we (mostly) laugh! Thank you for sharing about your sister. I’ve also run the contagion to a beautiful connection maze of interactions with Thomas.

      Thomas thrives in routine and schedule too and, like your mom, it can drive me a little crazy! Before Thomas, I was a “go where the wind takes me” kind of gal. Apparently, GOD had some lessons I needed to learn! Correction: I STILL need to learn!!! Thanks for the comment.

  11. Thank you for showing your vulnerable side and showing us what life looks like from your side as a God-fearing Mom to an autistic older son.

    • If I can help one person feel seen & known & not alone on their “parenting a kiddo who doesn’t fit in the “typical” box” journey, it’s worth it. Because GOD loves all of us, not because of our ability but because of nothing!! It’s just His love.
      Sorry…I’ll stop preaching now.

  12. Thank you for sharing this beautiful story! I have a neurodiverse daughter on the autistic spectrum. I can’t tell you the number of times I have tried to shield her from things claiming I was protecting her when much of it was being embarrassed when people would say things to her or me. That emotional tank is hard to keep filled! Her super power is that she has memorized most of the Bible and shares it with others which helped me to finally realize what you wrote here. She is a lamp pointing to God that shouldn’t be hidden. Do I still worry about what people will say to her, absolutely! But mostly I just pray that God will continue to use her light so that others may know his goodness!

    • Okay…I teared up a bit reading your comment. The balance of protecting & exposing is a REAL THING! I continually battle with it but the battle belongs to who? The LORD. Sorry. Preaching to myself.

      I love that your daughter has memorized scripture and shares it. I’m currently writing a devotional on THAT very thing. BTW. It’s a mom fail focus

      Thank you for sharing.

  13. Yes my family member with the autism is lovely so she is. But you have to keep routine with her. Thank you for your comment to me. Lacinda. I can’t wait to hear more daily reading from you again. As I love what you wrote today. I love all you said about your son. He sounds lovely too. He is a blessing to to you both you and your Husband in God eyes. As God loves us no matter what. As we are all fearfully and wonderful made in God eyes. That a blessing to us. To know that no matter what. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little Enniskillen Co.Fermanagh N.Ireland. Xx

  14. Thank you for stepping out and not hiding. Your message deeply touches my heart, because I love to run and hide. Thank you for your testimony! I am inspired to do better.

    • I’m a champion hide-n-seeker, heavy on the HIDE. It’s a daily focus on GOD and spending time in scripture that keeps me from staying at home and letting Thomas watch Barney all day! I’m thankful for friends who reminded me to show the world that ALL His image-bearers have value, regardless of ability. And Thomas needs to know he’s valuable too.

      Thank you for your encouragement and kind words.

  15. Raising and living with a special needs person requires an infinite amount of patience and grace and only Jesus can provide the perfect amount of both. God’s richest blessings to you and your family. Thank you so much for sharing your heart.

    • You know it! With our Jesus, I don’t know how I would function. When I think I can’t do it anymore, He will send me someone to remind me that I DON’T HAVE THE STRENGTH! He does.

      Thank you for your blessings.

    • Thank you! We just celebrated Thomas’s graduation from high school last night. It’s been an emotional few weeks. I have writing notes jotted down on stickie notes EVERYWHERE!

      Thank you for spending time with Thomas and me.

  16. La Cinda,

    We are commanded by God to love everyone! That includes special needs people also. They deserve to be loved for who they are. After all they were made in the image of Almighty God just like us. I do my best to shower everyone with God’s light & love. Jesus loves us all the same. I was born with two punctured eardrums & couldn’t hear for a long time. I understand having disabilities. That’s why you’ll see me with a smile on my face, dancing (some), thanking everyone for a job well done.

    Blessings 🙂

    • I can feel your enthusiasm for shining the love of Jesus as I read your words. Thank you for smiling, dancing, and thanking people of all abilities & giftings for a job well done! We can all be more understanding. Thank you!

    • Your words are uplifting my spirit as I sit here after a tough of day of Autism mothering! The celebrations of this past graduation weekend disrupted his routine. Today was full of re-regulating . Thank you for your encouragement.

  17. Thank you for this reflection of your life with your precious son. Our family has a 74 year old special needs adult who has brought us a life time of reminders of Gods deep love. ✝️

    • Just another member of the family . That’s how most of our extended family feels about Thomas too. He’s family with all the privileges & responsibilities!The end.

  18. Well, LaCinda I read all the comments first and what an encouragement to read how impacted people have been from your treasured words. Now, excise me while I actually read the devotional now.

  19. I read this along side my 9 yr old. She says “I hope you write another one.” – Maddy – Keep sharing your words dear sister. They’re piercing the hearts of people of all ages. ❤️

  20. Sweet girl!! My autistic son is highly-functioning, so not at all comparing my struggles with yours as though they are equal, but it is hard trying to discern from protecting them from hurtful people and comments (and ourselves, although I literally just realized that right now!) and giving them the opportunity to shine and learn without hovering and covering. Thank you for sharing this with us. Now I know I should listen to the Spirit’s prompting to do what this precious older gentleman did – to speak encouragement to a struggling mom, even if she looks like she’s handling it beautifully. I hope that’s the right thing to do, even if it feels like intruding. Anyway, I really enjoyed this moment in my day, reading about your lovely son. I sure would like to meet him – he sounds wonderful!

  21. Tears of thankfulness are streaming down my cheeks as I sit with this beautiful story of being valued. The idea of each person having value, simply and most importantly because we are each made in the image of God (the Imago Dei), is something I strive for and continually fail at. I want to treat each person with dignity and respect (just as I want to be treated), but darn it if my humanity doesn’t sneak in to sabotage beautiful opportunities to show the love of Christ to those around me. Thank you, Lord, for the kindness of this man at the grocery store. Thank you for his example. Thank you that you use all the parts of our story to bring hope and love into hard places. And thank you for LaCinda! What a joy and treasure her ministry is!

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