I'm finally reading Heaven Is for Real by Todd Burpo. I had a post not to long back stating that I honestly don't believe in trips to heaven or hell outside of Scripture, especially when all of a sudden people jump on the bandwagon and publish books about their experience.
Just the same, I am enjoying this book way more than 90 Minutes in Heaven which I never finished. I also find it slightly more credible.
I'm not going to completely recant my belief in trips to heaven or hell but there are times when it seems God does reach out to his people in comfort or in warning. Shortly after my mother died, Dad had some dream where he was visiting with her and Amanda, a sister of mine who only lived 23 days. I believe that was real. On my first birthday after mom went to be with the Lord, I had a dream where we were eating cake and ice cream and I was worrying about my weight. I wasn't in heaven. I was in what looked like the crummy, dying mall in Greenwood, SC. Then that summer I dreamed that I was Skyping with my mom. Oddly enough, I've never used Skype in real life as I have no web cam. Then mom's friend Frances had some dream where she asked my mother if she'd like to come back in which Mom replied, "No way!"
So maybe God does show you a glimpse of heaven sometimes to comfort his elect when they are in scary times. I do kind of believe when Colton Burpo was on the surgery table that Jesus held him in His lap and angels sang to him. This week, I've been tortured by worries and anxiety. After reading the Prologue to the book, I found comfort one night in remembering that heaven really does surround all believers. We're just not in heaven yet.
Parts I don't believe in the book. Why would Colton see Jesus as exactly how we draw Him in children's Bibles? A man with a beard, a white robe, and a purple sash. Why would he see Jesus period? How do all the people, both angels and non-angels have wings when the Bible affirms that we don't become angels when we die and says nothing about us having wings in heaven. (Although I secretly hope I do get wings in heaven. I'd love to fly.)
Another thing: Colton claims he was only in heaven three minutes, yet he had time to do homework, stay at his great-grandfather's house, and see Jesus who has red marker on his hands. Does heaven have Narnia time or is Todd Burpo embellishing this story? Is Colton embellishing because boys like to brag? I don't know. I'll have to see it to believe it. I'm still at stickler for Sola Scriptura, that there is no extra revelation from God outside of Scripture. But I'm secretly enjoying this book, too.