What would you do if your child said he had been to Heaven? Would you believe him? What would you say to your neighbors and friends? How would you explain it to your parishioners if you were the pastor of a church in a small Midwestern town?
That was Pastor Todd Burpo’s dilemma which he first shared in the book, “Heaven is for Real”. The book hit the New York Times Best Sellers list and was recently made into a movie with the same title.
When Colton Burpo was 4 years old he underwent emergency surgery, and as he hovered on the brink of death, he had an experience that would impact his life and the life of his family in a very powerful way.
While the surgeons were working on him, Colton saw his father yelling at God for the possibility of taking his son and his mother on her cell phone calling friends and neighbors to pray. Since Colton was under anesthesia at the time, there would have been no way in the natural that he could have seen that happening.
As time progressed, Colton began telling his parents more of what he had experienced. He talked about being in Heaven and told them about the people he had met there, including a sister who had died in his mother’s womb.
As would be expected, the experience caused Colton’s parents to do a lot of searching and examining of their faith.
This movie will certainly be the subject of conversation around the water cooler in the months ahead. Is this real? Is it a fantasy? Can someone really see into Heaven and talk about?
Whatever your thoughts are on “Heaven is for Real”, or the other movies of interest to Christians that have come out recently, the question that we as Christians should be asking ourselves is, “Are we prepared to give the reason for the hope that we have within us?”