Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Heaven is for Real
(This review appeared in the May issue of the Nebraska Family Times. If you would like a FREE sample copy, call (402) 993-2467 or e-mail shelly@shellyburke.net.)

By Megan Stromberg

If you’re like me, you believed heaven is for real, even before picking up this book. But, much like our sinful human nature, I want to “see” to believe.

Without giving away too much of the story, I’ll share with you some details of Heaven is for Real. At the center of the story is the Burpo family, from Imperial, NE. Their son Colton underwent a surgery at the young age of 3. Months later, as his family still dealt with the after-effects of the illness and other family challenges, he began to share tidbits of what happened while he was in surgery. The elements, they realized, were things that he should have no way of knowing. His father, a pastor, was floored by the depth of Colton’s revelations.

The book of Revelation is referenced frequently throughout Heaven is For Real. I’ve studied Revelation in several small group Bible Studies and on my own before, but this book made me want to revisit it. Throughout the book several other Bible passages are referenced to explain Colton’s disclosures. As a believer, I found myself grabbing my Bible to read many of the passages.

The book is much more than a compilation of the Burpo’s ordeal and Colton’s stories. It is a challenge to all adults – especially parents – to revisit our “childlike faith.”

Skeptics might argue that Colton’s father put these ideas in his head, or maybe even pushed them to help promote the book. I have to admit, there were times as I read that I questioned whether the events really happened. But after finishing the story in three short sittings, I have chosen to cling to the faith that continues to bring me back to God’s Word daily and that led me to Heaven is For Real.

I hope Heaven is For Real challenges you to consider your own beliefs, to search God’s Word for a better understanding of what He promises us in eternal life, and gives you hope that a loved one who was so broken physically or emotionally when they passed from this earth has been restored in heaven.

Because for me, HEAVEN IS FOR REAL. Thank you Colton for sharing those details through your child-like faith and for encouraging me in my own journey. Thank you Burpo family for baring your souls to your challenges and tragedies. May God bless you all in your journey.

And may God bless you – readers – in your discovery of His amazing power.

Megan Stromberg lives in Columbus, NE, with her husband and their five children.

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