I’m writing a book about my recent rip to heaven. A few days ago I had a near death experience. The precise details of how it happened will be revealed soon enough, but for now I want to give my loyal readers a sneak-peek into what happened. Part of the reason for writing this is that like many other people, I struggle with the notion that the scriptures are sufficient to tell us what we need to know about heaven. It has always bothered me that while Paul visited heaven, he did not speak of it or give us any insights into what he saw. For this reason I’ve found it necessary to seek out extra-biblical revelation so that I can get a better and clearer picture of what to expect. This had been my habit, until that one faithful day that changed it all. This is my story of my true experiences of my journey to the city of lights. I’m writing this book so that you may all be encouraged, have true certainty that heaven is real, and so that you can marvel at the glorious realities that you will soon learn. He we go!
“As I laid there bleeding, feeling the nausea wash over me, I felt life slipping away from me. I must have blacked out, because I could sense that I was no longer conscious. I awoke from almost a dream-like haze, and as I floated upwards into the clouds I could see my body on the ground as a crowd started to form.
Suddenly, in a blur, I found myself standing in front of two massive golden gates which were embroidered with pearls. I knew instantly I was in heaven! There was such a serene, peaceful sense of the place.I could see roiling clouds all around, and some kind of firmament off in the distance which stretched out for miles.
At the gates waiting for me was Jesus! He did not say his name right away, but as I saw him standing there, in a white robe with arms open wide, I knew it was him. He spoke to me “Come on, what are you waiting for?” I ran up to him and he swept me up in a crushing bear hug. He started swinging me around as he laughed and said “Welcome home, good and faithful one. I’ve missed you sooooo much”
After a minute of revelry he put me down. I gasped in delight. Tears of joy were streaming down my cheeks at the thought of finally being with my Savior. “Jesus” I told him, after I caught my breath, “you don’t look like I pictured you.”
And he didn’t. Jesus had long blonde hair, which has tinges of red in it, and was feathered all the way down. He had had olive skin, a sharp, angular nose, and a large gap between his front teeth. He smiled when he caught me staring “Sorry” I muttered, feeling embarrassed.
“No need to be sorry. I could have smiled without showing my teeth, but I wanted to be vulnerable with you and show you the real me, because in heaven there are no secrets.”
I nodded as I ventured a question “Jesus, why am I here?”
He slapped his hand on my back”Why don’t we talk over a meal, and I’ll tell you all about it?”
Suddenly I found myself transported to a large banquet table in a massive hall. As I sank down in cushioned seats, he clapped his hands twice, and a woman came out from behing swinging doors with a silver platter “She’s bringing grilled cheese sandwiches. They are my favorite food in the entire world” said Jesus, as he licked his lips expectantly.
I looked to see who was serving, expecting to see a cherubim of some sort, and was overcome to see that it was my aunt, who passed away when I was only ten. “Aunt Susan!” I exclaimed, is it really you?”
She smiled at me. “It’s me. Oh, you look so much like your mother”.
Suddenly, I felt myself frowning “But you don’t have wings? What happened to your wings?!” She looked confused. I turned to Jesus, who was looking equally puzzled. I explained to him “In Colton Burpo’s book “Heaven is for Real” he tells us that everyone in heaven has wings. Where are her wings?”
Jesus looked at me. He ventured out cautiously “Only a few angels have wings in heaven, because that’s how I made them. Why would people have wings?”
“Well, that’s what Colton Burpo said people had when he was in heaven.”
Jesus smirked a bit. Thrown off my this, I kept going, feeling more and more a sense of insistence. I was angry at myself that I could not keep a whining edge out of my voice.
” You must remember Colton Burpo, right? His dad’s name is Todd. He almost died when he was four and you took him to heaven. He rode around on a rainbow-colored horse! He sat on your lap and you gave him a halo. Angels sang to him and he met the Holy Spirit, which he described as”kind of blue. You’re omniscient, Jesus! How can you not remember?”
Jesus scratched his head. “Uh…..first of all, there’s no such thing as a rainbow-colored horse…and second of all, Colton Burpo won’t come here for another 63 more years….” His voice trailed off.
“That can’t be! Its not like visits to heaven are unusual. What about Don Simpson? You must remember him? He wrote a book about his time here called “90 Minutes in Heaven.”
Jesus gave me a blank, puzzled look. “I’m expecting to see him in 2027. No sooner, no later.”
I started to grow impatient. ”Come on Jesus, you know these people. You met them all. They told us what heaven was like…”
Jesus shrugged and then cut me off. “I wouldn’t put much stock in what these people have to say. I brought you to heaven now, and what you see clearly disagrees with their experiences. They’re wrong, you’re right.” He said firmly. “But anyway, instead of all that, I want to you focus on why I brought you here”
I perked up, immediately interested. “Yes, Jesus?”
“I want you to go warn the people about a certain preacher who is giving me a bad name. He is based out of Lakewood, Texas. He has one of the biggest churches in the world, has really shiny white teeth, and he’s always talking about how he’s having his best life now.”
“Oh! You mean Jo-”
Jesus clamped his hand over my mouth “Don’t say his name” he hissed in my ear; “You mustn’t say he who must not be named. Not in the place”
I’m sorry Jesus” I mumbled under his covered hand
“Its OK” he said, as he released me. He wiped the spittle from my mouth off his hand, on to his robe, then continued “Will you tell the world? Will you tell him that he is preaching falsehoods, and that he must be stopped?”
“I will, Jesus.” I said sincerely
“Ok then. Then that’s all I have for you. You’ve been in heaven for 22 minutes now- I wouldn’t want you to be here for 23. Goodbye my son. See you in a few ye-”
Then boom! I felt myself gasp awake. Rain water dripped on my face. I was back on earth! I tried to rotate my head but my neck was in some sort of foamy stabilizer. I looked up at an EMT who grinned and said to me “welcome back.”….
And there we go. That is a preview of the fourth chapter. I have much more to write as I fill in some details and flesh it out a bit. I expect that as they read it, people will ask me “Why you? Why did you get to go to heaven?” and the only answer I’ve been able to come up with, is that Jesus wanted to separate the truth from the mythos, the fact from the fiction, and was tired of all these people with good intentions trying to write about things that they couldn’t possibly know or have experienced. For this reason he wanted me to cut through all the noise, and give the “authorized” account, if you will. This probably would never have happened if we possessed inspired, infallible, prophetic and apostolic scriptures which tell us all we need to know about heaven, and which warns us not to exceed what is written and wander off into speculations, but rather be content with the knowledge that we have. Sadly this isn’t the case, as I know of no such book.
In any case, I hope to submit it to some publishers early 2014, and then get it out right in time for Easter. I’m expecting it to be a New York Times Bestseller, and then after I do the rounds on talk radio and get a few interviews under my belt, I’ll hit the Christian circuit. It’s only a matter of time before a bunch of churches start using my book for their sermon series, as well as small group bible studies. I expect that this will be quite the discussion, and that it will open people’s eyes to the deeper things of God that they might not find anywhere else. I’m calling my book ” Grill-Cheese and Gap-toothed; How one man went to heaven, and lived to tell about it.“ Look for it in your local Christian bookstore, and your Church lending library, soon.