I have had this book on my wish list since the day it came out. The Internet was abuzz with its message. But I have to admit, I was skeptical.
Last week my friend Jo Ann visited us in Florida and had read it on her road trip down. She raved about it. No sooner had I gotten back from Florida this weekend and my mom and sister were both on Facebook raving about it. Last night I picked the copy up from Mom’s.
The book itself is a great read. I noticed after finishing that it’s co-written by Lynn Vincent who also wrote Same Kind of Different as Me. The writing style and pacing completely made sense and accounts for why I liked the style of both of them so much. In the same way Same Kind of Different As Me had me up for nights just plowing through, I had this shorter book read in a few hours. I felt like you had a clear picture of the setting, characters and storyline. They did a great job of unfolding the story in much the same way they experienced it. So bravo on that end.
I have to preface my review of the content by another review I did of The Shack. I walked into that book unprepared. I didn’t realize it was fictional. I spent much of the book going, “Really?” Beyond that, the conversations with God supposedly happened and even those, I still question because they don’t align with much of my current theology. Basically, The Shack was well written but I don’t believe it. So going into this book I was skeptical. Really skeptical. Here is a family who is writing a book based on things a FOUR year old said. The biggest claim people say is, but that’s the point! A four year old wouldn’t know these things! And that’s right. I agree. A four year old wouldn’t know those things. But an adult would. And a creative adult can write any story any way he wants just like in The Shack. So I’m not saying the proof isn’t astounding. I’m just saying that a deceptive, creative set of people could write this book. There wasn’t anything about heaven that someone hasn’t conjectured already.
HOWEVER. Unlike when I read The Shack, I felt complete peace and joy reading the book. When I’ve read and listened to interviews of The Burpos online since then, I feel there is a sense of honesty there. They are just a family that experienced something supernatural and they’re putting it out there, no matter what you think. I’ve experienced that a time or two and know what it’s like to put yourself out there.
All of the things he said has lined up with Scripture, which I appreciated that they did throughout the book. In each interview, they are consistent in their message and don’t dodge questions.
Is there a small part of me that is still skeptical? Of course. People are capable of much more deception that you realize. But God is capable of what happened to this little boy too. So if I went in 50% sure of this, I came out 99% sure of it.
Which means. What an awesome story. What a good God we serve. How much more do I want to have that child-like faith. How awesome is the comfort so many people can receive from their story. And what color is my sash going to be??
I give it two thumbs and a Must Read!