Friday, August 5, 2011

A book review...

I've been debating about posting a little bit of a book review on here for some time now.  A couple months ago, I picked up the book Heaven is for Real at Costco.  It came highly recommended by several people.  Honestly, I used to devour books!  When the last Harry Potter book came out, Lily was just a couple months old.  I have very vivid memories of holding her in one arm, bottle in hand so I could feed her while holding the book in the other hand!  But since Leo was born and Lily was diagnosed, I haven't picked up a book with any more substance than you can find in a trashy romance.  I just don't have the brain-power and mental ability to sit still and read a book lately.  It's so frustrating.  But, I picked up this one and cracked it open and finished it, from cover to cover in about a day!  It was an amazing story.  I'll give you the synopsis first:
A young boy emerges from life-saving surgery with remarkable stories of his visit to heaven.
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.
Reading the story gave me goosebumps.  But it also gave me an incredible amount of hope!  I'm not an overly-religious person, but I do believe in God, Jesus, and Heaven.  I believe there's a purpose to this life and how we live it.  And like so many others, I've lost some really important, wonderful and amazing loved ones.  Reading Heaven is for Real gave me so much hope!  And it makes me want to share that hope with others.  In fact, I passed the book on to my sisters and I know it will make the rounds through my family.  Hope is an amazing thing, but it's even more amazing when you can spread it around!

In case you're not already convinced that you want to pick up this book and see what it has to say, I have a story to share.  A couple of days after finishing the book, I got a knock on my door.  You know those knocks...the local churches, the Jehovah's Witnesses, the various church organizations that come through with the idea that they're going to recruit you to their legions.  One of those knocks.  A couple of elderly men from a local Baptist church.  I have nothing against any religion, but I do have this pet peeve with many of them....the belief that their religion is the one and only true religion and everyone who doesn't follow them will be condemned.  I do not believe in that.  I don't believe in God condemning people to burning in Hell for all of eternity.  In fact, my belief in that can be summed up in one a parent, what would it take for you to cast your own child aside?  Reading the book just cemented that idea for me.  We are all God's children, no matter how we choose to worship or what form our spirituality takes, and I cannot envision a parent who would be willing to cast their own child aside.  So when these two men came to my door and asked me if I believed I was going to Heaven and how sure I was, I told them that I know without a doubt that God will not cast me aside and condemn me to the trials of Hell.  These people who knock on our doors, touting their own religion and trying to convert and "save" us, feed on our fears and our insecurities.  It felt good to have the upper hand for once!

Anyway, I hope you'll all forgive me for veering into the religious stuff tonight.  I'm not trying to convert anyone or recruit anyone for my religion and I'm asking nothing from anyone who reads this.  I just wanted to take the chance to share with you a book that has a wonderful message.  I want others to feel the hope that I do now.  I want others to know that, at the end of this life, we'll all be reunited with our loved ones.  I want others to know that death is not only an ending, but also the beginning of a new life.  That is very precious knowledge and gives the greatest hope of all!

1 comment:

  1. :) As you know, I could use this post today. Love you Cindy and thank you for the kind post on my Wall. Heaven gained one heck-uv-a guy yesterday. xo