For the last several years, my life has been a mess, in more than one manner of speaking. Autism threw us one crisis after another, often several at a time. Exhaustion and emotional defeat stalked me, but the Lord helped me manage one day at a time. Some days I went to bed as soon as the girls went down, and the people in the house who could eat gluten ate a lot of frozen pizza, but we are still here!

Tonight my husband ran an errand just before I needed to start our bedtime routine with Rachel. Typically, evening is a rush to the finish line during which the day’s mess gets shoved aside until “later.” As we’ve been working on connecting emotionally with Rachel through simple activities like dropping balls into baskets together during our RDI therapy, I thought I’d try something different.

In the span of a few minutes, Rachel had dumped out a tray of markers, her large basket (which she uses to carry around at least 10 different decks of cards), a new box of straws, and a set of 100 ball pit balls. I didn’t want to come back to that later, so I asked her to help me clean up. She hid and giggled while I cleaned in extremely slow motion and made lots of fun sounds. Then I pretended to sneak off with some of her cards. Finally, I got out a new bag and put her cards in it and held out some in her direction. And … It worked! Not only did she make certain she’d picked up every card, she looked for lost cards and balls under furniture and picked up the ones I pointed to and said, “uh-oh, we forgot this.” Amazing. It was a true miracle.

This act of sharing, obedience, and completion is so little, yet so huge! Rachel connected with me. She shared with me, and, most of all, she cleaned up. Thank the Lord!

To those of you in the midst of a tough time, I pray for your endurance. Hang in there. 2 Corinthians 1:3-7