Linda Buxa addresses our fascination and reaction to any and all stories similar to the book, "Heaven Is for Real?" Ultimately, we should open our Bible and trust God to reveal the facts.
We were talking about heaven--again--when one of my kids mentioned the wings we’ll have in heaven. I said, “Where did you hear that we’ll have wings?”
The answer came: “It was in the book Heaven Is for Real.”
So began a discussion on finding out what God says to see if it matches what this book says.
Heaven Is for Real was written by parents whose three-year-old son was seriously ill and rushed to emergency surgery. As the story claims, Colton visited heaven during a near death experience. This book was recently released as a movie, and Christians are taking either a pro! or a no! position. Maybe you’re having the same conversation with your friends and family that I had. Is the movie accurate? Can you die, go to heaven, and come back? Do people have wings? Does Jesus really ride a rainbow horse? Does the Holy Spirit really shoot down power? What about the battles he says he saw?
Frankly, because I don’t want to add one more voice to the Internet cacophony of decrying or praising the movie, I am not going to address any of those questions.
I want to address our fascination and reaction to any and all stories like these.
• Be a Berean. Lately, our natural inclination seems to be to run to the Internet to see what opinion we should have. Our first reaction should be like the people in Acts 17:11: “Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.”
Open up your Bible. Or use a Bible app to search for the word heaven. See what God says first of all. Then check God’s facts against any and every other book out there. If you still have questions, talk to your pastor or a trusted Christian friend—and search the Bible together.
• Don’t be Herod. “When Herod saw Jesus, he was greatly pleased, because for a long time he had been wanting to see him. From what he had heard about him, he hoped to see him perform a sign of some sort” (Luke 23:8).
Our human nature is rarely satisfied. Books that describe heaven sound awesome because we wish God had given us more information. God, however, feels that the Bible was exactly the right amount of words to let us know what Jesus has done for us. Let’s not hope for or ask God to perform tricks to prove over and over who He is, as if He’s in the circus. Instead, trust what he already has done for us and approach him as our Father who loves to give good gifts.
By the way . . .
Heaven is for real because God says so.