Heaven is for Real
I) The Title of this literature is “Heaven is for real” and the author is Todd Burpo with Lynn Vincent. II) The Brupo family lives in Imperial, Nebraska. Sonja and Todd Burpo are the parents of four wonderful children. Cassie, Colton, Colby, and one daughter that passed away due to maternal complications, are the children of Sonja and Todd Burpo. While on vacation during 2003, The Burpos family visited Denver Butterfly Pavilion. It was to celebrate Todd’s recovery from a shattered leg, kidney stones, and hyperplasia (a lump in his chest). Colton falls ill to feverish symptoms and what appeared to be a “stomach virus” (uncontrollable vomiting), so the fun ended early for the Burpo family. When he is transferred to Nebraska’s Great Plains Regional Medical Center, Dr. Timothy O’Holleran diagnosed him with a ruptured appendix. He had been living with toxins in his body for five days straight as a result of the ruptured appendix. After undergoing an appendectomy (removal of the appendix), Colton once again developed another sickness. He developed three abscesses (a swollen area of the body that has accumulated pus) and had to undergo another operation (a celiotomy) to remove the abscesses. After the various operations, Colton made a remarkable recovery. The events that follow shock Colton’s parents when he reveals that he took a trip to Heaven while he was in surgery. III) “Heaven is for real” focuses on Christian faith and belief. The book addresses that Heaven is real, God is real, Jesus is real, and even Satan is real. This is done through Colton’s experience in Heaven while undergoing his surgery. The book addresses people to be strong in Christian faith and in Jesus. The Burpos family has been deeply affected by their son’s visit to Heaven. Colton’s experience gave his mother the strength to move on from her maternal complication with her daughter. Colton reassured his great grandmother that she will find Pop (Lawrence Barber, her husband) in Heaven because he did. Colton’s experience made Todd Burpo realize that he could be real with God, even through anger and God would listen, he didn’t need a religious prayer to make God listen. “We are bolder” (Todd Burpo, 153), this experience has made the Burpos family stronger; it gives them faith every day to believe in God. IV) Todd Burpo is the pastor of Crossroads Wesleyan Church in Imperial, Nebraska. His sermons are broadcasted every Sunday on the local radio. He is very much qualified to share his son’s experience because he relates Colton’s experiences to what sacred texts say about Heaven and God. Throughout the story Todd Burpo provides citations from sacred texts and holy books to support what Colton claims is Heaven, what is in Heaven, who is in Heaven, what the people in Heaven look like, what Jesus looks like, what god looks like, and etc. Todd Burpo however is not a publisher or writer so he needed the help of Lynn Vincent. Lyn Vincent is the New York Times best-selling writer of Same Kind of Different as Me. Lynn is the author or coauthor of nine books, worked for eleven years as a senior writer, then worked as features editor (covering politics, culture, and current events). Todd Burpo wrote this book to share his son’s experience with the world. He believes that Colton experienced something special and it should not be kept a secret, it can help people hold onto their Christian Faith and have a stronger belief in God. In his own words he says, “We live in a day and time when people question the existence of God. As a pastor, I was always comfortable talking about my faith, but now, in addition, I talk about what happened to my son. It’s the truth and I talk about it, no apologies.” (Burpo, 153). V) When the Burpos family returns home from the tragedy, they faced huge depression after seeing the medical bills and overdue monthlies. The bills left them $23,000 of debt buried deep under the ground. However, with the help of family...
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