The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven

We’ve lived in our house for almost two years and for that entire time the dining room has been empty. We finally realized that we’ll never use it as a real dining room (at least not any time soon) and buying a dining set would be a colossal waste of money. We decided instead to make it an office – it would give us somewhere besides the family room to keep the computer, and it would give us space for a nice big bookshelf.

Three hours at Ikea, a borrowed truck, and four+ days later, this is what we ended up with (Yes, the doors are uneven and no, I don’t care):

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It forced me to finally go through the boxes of books that I’ve inherited from my mom and Christina. I put them into two piles: Books to Keep and Display, and Books to Keep in the Attic. I then went through all of my own books and separated them into Keep, Donate, and Storage. I really didn’t think I’d have enough room for everything, but apparently I need to buy MORE to fill it out.

One of the books that I came across in Christina’s pile was The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven by Kevin and Alex Malarkey. It stood out to me for several reasons: Christina was extremely skeptical about things like Heaven and God so I wasn’t sure why she would have a book like this, I needed something new to read, and I’m intrigued by stories about near death experiences and Heaven.

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I finished it in two nights and it was good, but not great. I was really hoping for more of Alex’s perspective – not just his story about Heaven, but about his accident and recovery and new life. What I got was a LOT of talk from his dad about prayer – which is fine, I understand it’s a spiritual book – but it was so overwhelming at times that I skimmed large portions of chapters just to get back to the story itself.

Full disclosure: I’m Catholic and although I believe in God, I question a lot of things and definitely don’t have it all figured out. I come from a more conservative background in terms of talking about my faith, so Evangelical Christians like the authors tend to make me feel uncomfortable. Every time there was talk of “prayer warriors” and spiritual battles and laying on of hands, I had to skip ahead. And there was LOTS of skipping, which is probably why I finished it so quickly (I’m a fast reader, but two nights is quick even for me!).

I guess I was looking for what a lot of us are looking for: answers. I wanted to read in depth descriptions of Heaven and death and what the afterlife is really like. Alex provides a glimpse, and honestly, I do believe his story, but I found it frustrating that there were many things he said he wasn’t allowed to talk about. I tried Googling him and his family today but I came up short on current information.

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