Friday, June 24, 2011

Heaven Is For Real: A Book Review

About The Book:

Heaven Is for Real is the true story of the four-year old son of a small town Nebraska pastor who during emergency surgery slips from consciousness and enters heaven. He survives and begins talking about being able to look down and see the doctor operating and his dad praying in the waiting room. The family didn't know what to believe but soon the evidence was clear.
Colton said he met his miscarried sister, whom no one had told him about, and his great grandfather who died 30 years before Colton was born, then shared impossible-to-know details about each. He describes the horse that only Jesus could ride, about how "reaaally big" God and his chair are, and how the Holy Spirit "shoots down power" from heaven to help us.
Told by the father, but often in Colton's own words, the disarmingly simple message is heaven is a real place, Jesus really loves children, and be ready, there is a coming last battle.

About The Authors:

Todd Burpo is the pastor of Crossroads Wesleyan Church in Imperial, Nebraska (Population: 1,762) where his sermons are broadcast locally every Sunday via the local radio station. In emergencies Todd can be found working shoulder-to-shoulder with the Imperial Volunteer Fire Department as a fire fighter. He is also the chaplain for the Nebraska State Volunteer Firefighter's Association. In addition, Todd works with an overhead door company. Todd graduated from Oklahoma Wesleyan University in 1991 summa cum laude with a BA in Theology. He was ordained in 1994.
Todd and his wife Sonja, who is a children's minister, busy pastor's wife, mom, and office worker at a local realtor, are the parents of Colton, now an active 12-year old, Cassie, his older sister, and Colby, his younger brother

Lynn Vincent is the New York Times best-selling collaborative writer of Heaven Is for Real, in which a father recounts his three-year-old son's encounter with Jesus and the angels during an emergency appendectomy; Same Kind of Different as Me, the story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy white art dealer and a homeless African-American man; Unsinkable, the story of 16-year-old Abby Sunderland's attempt to sail around the world; and Going Rogue: An American Life, the memoir of former Alaska governor and vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.
The author, coauthor, and collaborative writer of ten books, Vincent worked for eleven years as a writer and editor at the national news biweekly WORLD Magazine covering politics, culture, and current events. A U.S. Navy veteran, she teaches writing at colleges and conferences around the country. Lynn lives in San Diego, CA.

My Review:
 There are many books on the market today that take you through "after life" experiences, both Christian and non-Christian. Most of those books I have not taken the time to read, as I just did not feel good about reading them. When Heaven Is For Real was first released, I have to admit I was initially skeptical. I wasn't sure exactly how Todd would relay what his son had been through, and how theologically sound this book was. I had heard both positive and negative reviews but felt that I had to read it and make an opinion of my own. And I am very glad I did just that.

Though I enjoyed the style of writing and ease with which I could read Heaven Is For Real, there were times as I read the book that I thought (often out loud) "really, what four year old thinks this way?" My skeptic side made an appearance more then once as I read this book. I am not saying the Near Death Experiences do not occur, because there is a part of me that believes that they do. Although I have never experienced it myself, nor know anyone who has, I know some people, including maybe even some of you reading this review, have been through that experience.

That said, I thought the book was incredibly heart warming and believable. I felt that each of the events that Colton spoke of were related to the reader in a scripturally sound manner. It took very theological topics and explained them in a very child-like manner, so anyone can understand concepts about Heaven and the afterlife.

I am also very glad that Todd and his wife, chose to wait to tell the world of Colton's experiences. I think by doing so they allowed themselves and Colton to really deal with what was happening without the added pressure of society's questions. It really made me look at eternity with the eyes of a child. And it is my prayer that this book will be a comfort to those who have lost loved ones and those who are seeking and searching with regards to the Christian faith.

I do think this was a great book and I do recommend you read it and make your own opinion about Colton's experience.
BUY IT: You can purchase Heaven Is For Real at your local bookseller from Thomas Nelson
***I received a complimentary copy of this book, courtesy of Graf-Martin Communication and Thomas Nelson, for the purpose of review on this blog. All opinions expressed are my own, and I have not been compensated in any other manner***


  1. Great review! I've read many reviews for this book, and have been on the fence whether to read it. You've made it sound interesting enough that I think I'll snag a copy. Thanks so much for sharing. Happy iFellowship! ☺

  2. Hi there I also reviewed this book and in spite of my usual skeptic side felt myself cheering for it and wanting it to be true. I think it is great reading for anyone who needs a bit of stimulation on what heave may be like and hopefully will send the back to the bible for God's description.

  3. I received this book as a Mother's day gift and haven't read it yet, but I am excited to do so!!!

    I am here from iFellowship! :)