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Resources About Disability

Visit the libraries at the Downtown and North campuses to find the following resources about disability and special needs.

Autism and Your Church
Nurturing the Spiritual Growth of People With Autism Spectrum Disorders
by Barbara J. Newman
Many of our nurseries and Sunday School classrooms have one or more children with autism. Each individual is an indispensable part of the body and this book is helpful for the classroom staff to find ways to minister to children with autism while blessing the entire group.  Especially useful is section 4, “Ten Strategies for Including Individuals with ASD.”

Barrier-Free Friendships
Bridging the Distance Between You and Friends With Disabilities
by Joni Eareckson Tada and Steve Jensen
This book is especially helpful if you feel uncomfortable or awkward approaching someone with disabilities. We all need true friendship, but for many people with disabilities their lives are filled with helpers and caregivers and few friends.  As Christians we should be eager to bridge the gaps and reach out in friendship.  This book is a helpful start in that direction.

Bright Valley of Love
by Edna Hong
This book shares the story of Gunther, an abused and disabled boy living in Nazi Germany.  Society scorned the disabled and yet meek and compassionate followers of Christ saw through his broken body and nurtured Gunther’s soul.  This is a book you will never forget.

Compassionate Caregiving
by Lois D. Knutson
This book is a good resource for anyone navigating the often difficult and complicated world of caregiving.  It is full of practical and helpful information.

Developing Talents
Careers for Individuals With Asperger Syndrome and High-Functioning Autism
by Temple Grandin and Kate Duffy
This is a practical and helpful book. At first glance it appears to be geared toward older teens and adults, but this book is also useful for parents with a younger child who would like to begin thinking and directing their child with autism toward meaningful life skills.

Exceptional Teaching
A Comprehensive Guide for Including Students With Disabilities
by Jim Pierson
This is a handbook that no Disability Ministry should be without.  The book is filled with practical information and a great go-to guide for questions about teaching people with disabilities.

Finding Your Child’s Way on the Autism Spectrum
Discovering Unique Strengths, Mastering Behavior Challenges
by Dr. Laura Hendrickson
There are so many books on autism, but this book is at the top of the must-read list especially for parents and caregivers.  It is more than information, this book is an encouragement to families who face the diagnosis of autism and a real help in seeing God’s hand in the process. The author’s Biblical perspective and practical advice are especially beneficial.

Just the Way I Am
by Krista Horning
Krista’s book uses delightful pictures of some of the Bethlehem children with disabilities, scripture and simple truth-filled statements to highlight the certainty that God is our great designer.  Her story at the end of the book is a testimony of God’s good work in using hard things to bring growth in wisdom and directing us to Jesus. What an amazing way to share God’s sovereign goodness with children (and adults).

A Lifetime of Wisdom
Embracing the Way God Heals You
by Joni Eareckson Tada
I have given this book to many people.  It is a precious gift for anyone who is suffering or trying to understand God’s hand in suffering.  To read this book is to drink of the richness of the wisdom God freely gives to those who seek him in their suffering.  It is a tear jerking, faith-filled testimony. You will be changed by this book.

A Promise Kept
The Story of an Unforgettable Love
by Robertson McQuilkin
Robertson McQuilkin leaves his important and visible work as president of Columbia University to care for his wife with Alzheimer’s.  His faith and love for Jesus help him to do the extraordinary and find great joy in a life that many would pity.  This is an eye opening book for anyone, especially those who struggles with the sacrifices that disability and Alzheimer’s bring.

Same Lake, Different Boat
Coming Alongside People Touched by Disability
by Stephanie O. Hubach
This is one of the best books I have read about ministering to people with disabilities.  Stephanie shares her faith and her life experience as a mom with a child with Down syndrome.  The Disability Ministry volunteers were given this book last year and the feedback was very positive.

Special Needs, Special Ministry
by Jim Pierson, Louise Tucker Jones, and Pat Verbal
This is a book filled with stories of people starting disability ministries in their churches, sometimes with only one or two volunteers and one student.  This book is practical and encouraging.

Temple Grandin
This movie is about the life of Temple Grandin, a remarkable woman with autism. This movie goes a long way in helping people understand the struggles individuals with autism live with.

Thinking in Pictures and Other Reports From My Life With Autism
by Temple Grandin
This book is written by a woman who has autism and it is a window into her mind. Temple writes in a charming, matter-of-fact style and I honestly had a hard time putting the book down. After reading this book I will never look at autism the same again. It helped me gain not just insight, but understanding.

Too Wise to Be Mistaken, Too Good to Be Unkind
by Cathy Steere
This is the journey of a young Christian mom whose first child has autism, but the message is very helpful for any parent raising a typical child or a child with disabilities.  Cathy Steere does a good job of encouraging parents to remember that their first responsibility is to point their children toward Christ and show them their need for a Savior and that any diagnosis or recommended therapy is secondary to Biblical parenting.

The Unexpected Gift
by Michelle Schreder
This is a sweet and encouraging book written by the mother of a son with autism.  Her words express the feelings and experiences of so many Christian parents who are raising a child with disabilities.  This book is easy to read and full of the author’s quest for Biblical answers to hard situations.

Wresting With an Angel
A Story of Love, Disability,
 and the Lessons of Grace
by Greg Lucas
“It is a rare book that makes much of God and our dependency on Him while also celebrating His goodness through hard things. This book is a gift to the church, and particularly to men who need an example of masculine, biblical leadership in the face of complex, confusing and overwhelming circumstances.”—John Knight, Senior Director for Development, Desiring God