Spread the Love

The first Golden Ideas book was developed and written by Joane and me out of compassion and love for the teachers we were supporting as independent consultants.  We saw the same needs repeatedly and created something that they could use to make their daily jobs a little easier as they served students with autism and other developmental disabilities.  Immediately, families asked for the same type of tool for the home and community.  Life got in the way and well over a decade later that book finally came to fruition.  Now both books serve as companion pieces and are being used by teachers, family members and service providers of people with autism and other developmental disabilities across the lifespan.  As it was in the very beginning, it remains our desire to help others.

Jesus’ life is a testimony of love and compassion towards others and a demonstration as to how we are to live our lives.  Matthew 14:14 states “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.” Jesus was the greatest teacher, leader and servant of all time.  He taught us how to lead others through servant-leadership.  In Matthew 23:11 Jesus spoke to His disciples and the multitudes and said, “But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.”

On the journey to writing the second Golden Ideas book, I became involved in servant leadership activities at Elevate Life Church.  One of my favorite opportunities allows me to serve the homeless people of South Dallas.  Many of these people are the ones I would drive past each day on my way home from work as they slept on the sidewalks or waited in long lines to get into one of the homeless shelter.  The tornado clean-up in Rowlett allowed me to serve others who had lost their homes and most of their earthly possessions and show them love and compassion in the aftermath of a terrible storm.  I did this again with twenty-nine other missionaries who went on the five-day trip to Rockport, TX to serve survivors of Hurricane Harvey.  These events served as life changing events for me as I served others in need.  It offered me a small glimpse into God’s daily world.  There are countless others in Florida, the Caribbean and Puerto Rico who have since experienced similar devastation and they too need our prayers and help.

Compassion and love is needed for people everwhere and God has also called a team of forty that includes me, to travel to Gulu, Uganda to set up a medical clinic, kid’s camp, leadership training for 22 churches, build a large playground and be a part of the Bernie Moore ministries.

These events have led to the idea of this “Spread the Love Sale”.  spread the love specialBy offering the Golden Ideas books at a great discount everyone benefits!  The people for whom the books are intended get a great deal or gift and they can pass along their savings to others in need if they so choose.  Funds raised are part of my campaign for the mission trip.

I am asking you to Spread the Love by sharing this information, making a purchase or making a contribution to my mission trip at https://fcsmnstry.io/zg/M26kB3

As always, thank you for stopping by! 

Oh, as an update, Ernie’s donor, Debra, from my last blog, went to Rockport and is going to Africa as part of the team too!  A true woman of God!!!

Here are some of the images and friends I made along my journey in Rockport, TX:

      

Chainsaw Warriors!                                                 
What a team!

 

Wandering Children

School is well under way for another school year and the teachers are finally settling down.  I have found that each year I have had to address the issue of wandering or eloping children.  Most of the students involved have autism.  A 2012 study found that nearly half of children with autism spectrum disorder will wander away from a safe environment with more than half of those wandering into dangerous situations. 

If you have ever lost a child, with a disability or not, for a moment or longer, you know the heart stopping feeling.  You must catch your breath, senses and all available resources to find the child.  I am pleased to report that all the children I have been involved with (or got to know after their eloping began) over the years have been found safe and unharmed.  I praise God for their safe return! 

There are some great resources to help prepare for such events and possibly prevent or slow down some escapes.  The National Autism Association offers free materials for caregivers and first responders through their Big Red Safety Box http://nationalautismassociation.org/big-red-safety-box/

One of our students who has become a frequent fleer has warranted a tracking device so I was given the task of researching GPS systems for students.  There are an amazing number of new devices available.  First, we had to determine specific features for this student and I narrowed my recommendations down to this list of four devices:

Trax Play, AngelSense, GPS Guardian and PocketFinder

There are many others in a watch format but we determined that type would not work for this student.  If he was tied to his smart phone like most teens we could have added an app like the one used by my friend and me when we took our road trip last year.  My friend was afraid I might leave her at some point so she wanted her husband to know where he could locate her.  That point almost happened in Nashville on the way home but we made up.

As I was researching all the different devices I realized that some type of device or app would probably work well for most teens.  Some come with geofencing where parents can set up perimeters around geographic areas and if the child moves outside of the area a warning is sent to the parent.  Great for those teens who are starting to drive.

For all those wandering children, please stop