Book Review II
“That’s Where The Angels Sang To Me”
“Heaven Is For Real,” Prologue, page XVII
Three months had gone by after Colton left the hospital, during which he had said nothing about his supernatural experiences. On the way to South Dakota on vacation they arrived at North Platte, the scene of his recent hospital stay. Colton’s Mom, Sonja, asked him if he remembered the hospital.
His reply was, “Yes, Mommy, I remember, that’s where the angels sang to me.” Try to picture your reaction if your (or any) four year old came out with such a statement! Needless to say, Colton’s parents were thunderstruck. After a little recovery from the shock, Colton’s Dad, Todd, and his Mom verified that neither of them had talked to Colton about angels.
This introduction to all Colton’s supernatural experiences is pretty mild. But what flows out after the introduction gets heavy fast! Before digging in, a look at the Burpo family and its physical and spiritual environment is in order to give us a sense that this remarkable saga has a credible foundation:
· Rural Nebraska is a good place to find solid, conservative values, family and community (and frequently Christ) centered life styles, patriotism and great work ethics. I lived my entire pre-college life in an area like Imperial, just across the eastern Nebraska border in Iowa. My mother spent her childhood on a ranch just across the border from Imperial near Holyoke, Colorado. From Todd’s description of life in that area it seems you couldn’t have found a better place to raise a family;
· The Wesleyan Church, the small denomination in which Todd is a Pastor, is conservative, evangelical , holds to the authority of the Bible and emphasizes holy living;
· Within that larger Christian environment, Colton was raised in the strong Christian environment of a Pastor’s family;
· Todd and Sonja are very well educated , and demonstrate much common sense, compassion, sensitivity and parental skill-a great home environment for Colton and his siblings;
· Conclusion: It is a credible foundation! I found myself utterly satisfied that I was reading a true report of genuine happenings that can be taken at face value as we explore the implications of Colton’s experiences.
To the digging-let us list the Colton sayings contained in the Prologue of “Heaven Is For Real” in the order given:
· Colton’s Dad-“Colton, you said that angels sang to you while you were at the hospital?” Colton nodded a vigorous yes.
· Dad-“What did they sing to you?” Colton-“Well, they sang Jesus Loves Me and Joshua Fought The Battle Of Jericho; I asked them to sing We Will, We Will Rock You, but they wouldn’t sing that.”
· Dad-“Colton, what did the angels look like?” Colton-“Well, one of them looked like Grandpa Dennis, but it wasn’t him, ‘cause Grandpa Dennis has glasses———-Dad, Jesus had the angels sing to me because I was so scared. They made me feel better.”
· Dad-“You mean Jesus was there?” Colton- “Yeah, Jesus was there.” Dad-“Well, where was Jesus?” Colton-“I was sitting in Jesus’ lap.”
· Dad-“Colton, where were you when you saw Jesus?” Colton-“At the hospital. You know, when Dr. O’Holleran was working on me.” Dad-“Are you sure it was at the hospital?” Colton-“Yeah, at the hospital. When I was with Jesus, you were praying, and Mommy was talking on the phone.” Dad-“But you were in the operating room, Colton, how could you know what we were doing?” Colton-“’Cause I could see you, I went up out of my body and I was looking down and I could see the doctor working on my body. And I saw you and Mommy. You were in a little room by yourself, praying, and Mommy was in a different room, and she was praying and talking on the phone.”
Wow, what a gold mine to dig in! I will share what comes to my mind, bullet by bullet. No doubt other things will come to yours. What implications are there! Keep in mind, Colton was in the hospital at North Platte, lying on the operating table, unconscious under general anesthesia, with the surgeon working on his body throughout all the events in the prologue (come to think of it, through all the supernatural events in the whole book)!. So on with the adventure:
· (Bullets 1-3 from above) Colton had an interaction with angels. He heard them singing and knew it was to him they were singing; he knew the two songs that they sang to him; he could talk and asked them for an encore but was refused; he could see them, and thought one of them looked like his grandpa; he knew it wasn’t grandpa because his grandpa wore glasses and the angel didn’t; he saw and heard Jesus who explained that He sent the angels because he was so scared; he told his Dad that the angels had made him feel better! His physical eyes, ears and brain were all on the operating table still within his body, yet his consciousness was alive and well somewhere else——and interacting with angels and Jesus! Hey, Colton, move over. I want to get into this act!
· (Bullets 4 and 5 from above) Colton verified that Jesus was there at the hospital in addition to the angels, and that he was sitting on Jesus’ lap! When his Dad pressed him for details, he said he left his body, rose up to a position above the operating room where he could look down and see Dr. O’Holleran still doing surgery on his body, and that he could also see his Dad and Mom in separate rooms and tell what they were doing.. The implication, he could see through three ceilings from his perch, where ever it was, without benefit of (material) eyes! And with no (material) brain could recognize his own body, Dr. O’Holleran, his Mom and his Dad down below!
Think about it. No problem with Jesus in this local situation. He is in his celestial body, able to escape a sealed tomb, appear or disappear at will, walk through walls or locked doors, eat fish with his disciples, disguise himself on the road to Emmaus, ascend vertically from the Mount of Olives to heaven, and able to return in the reverse direction. But his body was tangible, and had eyes, ears and speech organs But the angels were pure spirit beings, who had no body, but appeared to have. Who had no eyes, ears, or speech organs, but appeared to have them, and could see, hear, speak and sing. Where Colton was, he had no body, no eyes, no ears, no speech organs, yet he saw, heard and spoke. Is there any scripture that can give credence to this possibility?
Rev. 6:9, 10 When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held. And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth? (This event is future to us)
Perhaps these souls give a clue. Although their bodies had died (Colton’s had not) they were conscious, thought and felt, and cried out their emotions. Today all the Christian dead in heaven have yet to receive their glorified bodies, but are present (in some sort of interim spirit body?) with Jesus in heaven in a state Paul labels as “far better” than our earthly existence, intimating that they know each other and interact with all the citizens of heaven.
Jesus “normal” posture is sitting on his throne on the right hand of the Father’s throne. Did He come down Himself? Or did the Holy Spirit take on the appearance of Jesus to minister to Colton? We can’t know. But as far as Colton was concerned, it was Jesus! That is what matters. Praise the Lord!
I personally believe that all of this happened, just as Colton tells it. As I read the book, each incredible event was not only wonderful, but rang true in my heart, which I interpreted as verification by the Holy Spirit. What a blessing!
The next installment of this book review will get into the main text itself, and no doubt some of the implications will hark back to what has been discussed as we covered the Prologue. Be with you again soon, Lord willing.