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Heaven is for real, p.1
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       Heaven Is for Real, p.1

           Todd Burpo
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  “You wil be moved by the honest, simple, childlike accounts of a little boy

  who has been to heaven. It’s compel ing and convincing. It’s a book you

  should read. If you’re ready to go to heaven, this book wil inspire you. If

  you’re not ready for heaven, al ow a little child to lead you. Like Colton

  says, Heaven Is for Real.”

  — Don Piper

  Speaker and Author, 90


  in Heaven

  “Every now and again a manuscript comes across my desk where the title

  intrigues me. That’s what happened with this particular book cal ed

  Heaven Is for Real. I thought I’d just skim through it, but I couldn’t put it

  down. I read it from cover to cover. I was so impacted by the story. It’s a

  book that wil not only make you love God more and fear death less, but it

  wil help you understand that heaven is not a place where we just sit around

  for a thousand years singing Kumbaya; it’s a place where we begin to live

  as we were always meant to live, before the fal . If heaven is something that

  intrigues you, or troubles you, if you wonder what our lives wil be like, then I

  highly recommend this book.”

  — Sheila Walsh WOF

  Speaker and Author,

  Beautiful Things Happen


  a Woman Trusts God

  “Heaven is not a consolation prize. It is a real place that wil be the eternal

  home for al who believe. Take a journey with Colton and Todd as they

  describe firsthand the wonders, mysteries, and majesty of heaven. It wil

  make earth more meaningful and the future more hopeful.”

  — Brady Boyd

  Senior Pastor, New Life


  Colorado Springs

  “There have been many stories of ‘near-death’ experiences that I simply

  have not read because I frankly didn’t know if I could trust the author. Wel , I

  have read this book cover to cover and, moreover, I could hardly put it

  down! Why? Because I know the author and I believe him. Todd Burpo

  gives us a wonderful gift as he and his son lift the veil on eternity, al owing

  us a quick glimpse of what lies on the other side.”

  — Dr. Everett

  Piper President, Oklahoma



  Author, Why I’m a Liberal and

  Other Conservative Ideas

  “In this beautiful and wel -written book, Colton, age four, has an experience

  consistent with a near-death experience (NDE) while under anesthesia. I

  have scientifical y studied over 1,600 NDEs, and found that typical NDEs

  may occur in very young children and while under anesthesia. Even after

  studying so many NDEs, I found Colton’s experience to be dramatic,

  exceptional, and an inspiration to Christians everywhere.”

  — Jeffrey Long, MD

  Founder, Near Death


  Research Foundation

  Author, Evidence of the


  The Science of Near-Death


  “A beautiful y written glimpse into heaven that wil encourage those who

  doubt and thril those who believe.”

  — Ron Hal

  Coauthor, Same Kind of

  Different as Me

  “Some stories want to be told. They simply have a life of their own. The

  book you hold in your hand is just such a story. But it won’t stay long with

  you; it wil bubble over into your conversations in search of someone who

  has not yet heard. I know it wil happen to you because that is what

  happened to me.”

  — Phil McCal um

  Senior Pastor, Evergreen

  Community Church

  Bothel , Washington

  “The Bible describes heaven as the dwel ing place of God. It is a real place

  that al those who submit their lives to God wil have as an eternal dwel ing.

  In this book Todd Burpo relays the account of his son’s experience when

  he was in surgery for a burst appendix. It is honest and touching and

  encouraging to al of us who have an eternal hope.”

  — Robert Morris

  Pastor, Gateway Church,

  Southlake, Texas

  “Heaven Is for Real is a wonderful book. It reaffirms how important faith is

  in our lives—for children as wel as adults.”

  — Timothy P. O’Hol eran, MD

  “Colton’s story could have been in the New Testament—but God has

  chosen to speak to us in this twenty-first century through the unblemished

  eyes of a child, revealing some of the mysteries of heaven. The writing is

  compel ing and the truth astonishing, creating a hunger for more.”

  — Jo Anne Lyon

  General Superintendent,

  The Wesleyan Church

  “God is so creative and credible! The discoveries of this book wil amplify

  that in new ways. I’ve known Colton since birth. As a toddler, he already

  had a keen spiritual interest and intensity. At about age 3, he sat on my

  knee, looked me in the eyes and asked if I wanted to go to heaven when I

  died. Then told me “You need to have Jesus in your heart.” I commend this

  book as a fresh perspective on the reality of God, who often seems hidden

  yet interrupts on His schedule.”

  — Phil Harris

  District Superintendent,

  Colorado-Nebraska District


  the Wesleyan Church

  “It is always a blessing to hear that Akiane’s paintings have touched

  another person’s life. Her Prince of Peace depiction of Christ remains one

  of her most beloved works. And as parents of a child that has experienced

  something extraordinary and unexplained by earthly measures, I celebrate

  with this family in their joy and in the tel ing of their special story.”

  — Forel i Kramarik

  Coauthor, Akiane: Her Life,

  Her Heart, Her Poetry

  Heaven Is for Real

  Heaven Is for Real

  A Little Boy's Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven

  and Back

  Todd Burpo

  with Lynn Vincent

  © 2010 by Todd Burpo

  All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or

  transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording,

  scanning, or other—except for brief quotations in critical reviews or articles, without the prior

  written permission of the publisher.

  Published in Nashville, Tennessee, by Thomas Nelson. Thomas Nelson is a registered

  trademark of Thomas Nelson, Inc.

  Author is represented by the literary agency of Alive Communications, Inc., 7680 Goddard

  Street, Suite 200, Colorado Springs, CO 80920.

  Thomas Nelson, Inc., titles may be purchased in bulk for educational, business, fund-raising,









  [email protected]

  Unless otherwise noted, Scripture quotatio
ns are taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW

  INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by

  permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

  Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from Holy Bible, New Living Translation. © 1996,

  2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All

  rights reserved.

  Scripture quotations marked ESV are taken from THE ENGLISH STANDARD VERSION. © 2001 by

  Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.

  Scripture quotations marked NKJV are taken from THE NEW KING JAMES VERSION. © 1982 by

  Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

  Scripture quotations marked KJV are taken from the King James Version of the Bible. Public


  Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

  Burpo, Todd.

  Heaven is for real : a little boy’s astounding story of his trip to heaven and back / Todd

  Burpo with Lynn Vincent.

  p. cm.

  Includes bibliographical references.

  ISBN 978-0-8499-4615-8 (pbk.)

  1. Heaven—Christianity. 2. Burpo, Colton, 1999– 3. Near-death experiences—Religious

  aspects—Christianity. I. Vincent, Lynn. II. Title.

  BT846.3.B87 2010

  133.901'3092—dc22 2010023391

  Printed in the United States of America

  10 11 12 13 14 EB 5 4 3 2 1

  “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little

  children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”




  Prologue: Angels at Arby’s

  1. The Crawl-A-See-Um

  2. Pastor Job

  3. Colton Toughs It Out

  4. Smoke Signals

  5. Shadow of Death

  6. North Platte

  7. “I Think This Is It”

  8. Raging at God

  9. Minutes Like Glaciers

  10. Prayers of a Most Unusual Kind

  11. Colton Burpo, Col ection Agent

  12. Eyewitness to Heaven

  13. Lights and Wings

  14. On Heaven Time

  15. Confession

  16. Pop

  17. Two Sisters

  18. The Throne Room of God

  19. Jesus Really Loves the Children

  20. Dying and Living

  21. The First Person You’l See

  22. No One Is Old in Heaven

  23. Power from Above

  24. Ali’s Moment

  25. Swords of the Angels

  26. The Coming War

  27. Someday We’l See


  Timeline of Events


  About the Burpos

  About Lynn Vincent


  In tel ing Colton’s story, we have been afforded the chance to not just work

  with dedicated professionals but with real and caring people. Sure, we

  have been impressed with their expertise, but Sonja and I have been more

  delighted by their character and their hearts.

  Phil McCal um, Joel Kneedler, Lynn Vincent, and Debbie Wickwire have

  not just invested their own lives into the making of this book; they have also

  enriched our family. Without their enormous efforts and sensitive spirits,

  Heaven Is For Real would have never developed so wonderful y.

  We thank God daily for assembling these gifted and talented people to

  help us tel Colton’s story. Each one has been a blessing to us.

  Sonja and I count it a wonderful privilege to cal them our friends.

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