Over the course of many months, Chad and his Alabama worldview spent time with believers from Beijing to Rio de Janeiro, worshiping with them and observing not only how their faith influences their daily lives but also how their daily lives influence their faith, in hopes of learning which parts of his faith have been compromised by the American Dream.
Reflecting on conversations and experiences, Gibbs wrestles with a wide range of questions from his conservative Christian background, including politics and patriotism in the church and how living in Alabama has shaped his views on pacifism, alcohol, and Christ himself. An attempt to extract and examine the biases in the author’s own faith, Jesus Without Borders will have readers questioning if they believe certain things because they are a Christian, or because they are an American, as they meet believers from around the world with differing views on a variety of subjects.
Told with Gibbs’ trademark humor, Jesus Without Borders enlightens and entertains, introducing readers to believers around the world in hopes of eliminating prejudices and misconceptions, clearing away the parts of our culture that keep us from seeing a clearer picture of Christ, and living connected to the family of faith around the globe.
“Do you remember the hospital, Colton?” Sonja said. “Yes, mommy, I remember,” he said. “That’s where the angels sang to me.”
When Colton Burpo made it through an emergency appendectomy, his family was overjoyed at his miraculous survival. What they weren’t expecting, though, was the story that emerged in the months that followed—a story as beautiful as it was extraordinary, detailing their little boy’s trip to heaven and back.
Colton, not yet four years old, told his parents he left his body during the surgery–and authenticated that claim by describing exactly what his parents were doing in another part of the hospital while he was being operated on. He talked of visiting heaven and relayed stories told to him by people he met there whom he had never met in life, sharing events that happened even before he was born. He also astonished his parents with descriptions and obscure details about heaven that matched the Bible exactly, though he had not yet learned to read.
With disarming innocence and the plainspoken boldness of a child, Colton tells of meeting long-departed family members. He describes Jesus, the angels, how “really, really big” God is, and how much God loves us. Retold by his father, but using Colton’s uniquely simple words, Heaven Is for Real offers a glimpse of the world that awaits us, where as Colton says, “Nobody is old and nobody wears glasses.”
Heaven Is for Real will forever change the way you think of eternity, offering the chance to see, and believe, like a child.
Continue the Burpos story in Heaven Changes Everything: The Rest of Our Story. Heaven Is for Real also is available in Spanish, El cielo es real.
Loss came suddenly for Jerry Sittser. In an instant, a tragic car accident claimed three generations of his family: his mother, his wife, and his young daughter.
While most of us will not experience such a catastrophic loss in our lifetime, all of us will taste it. And we can, if we choose, know the grace that transforms it.
A Grace Disguised plumbs the depths of our sorrows, whether due to illness, divorce, or the loss of someone we love. The circumstances are not important; what we do with those circumstances is. In coming to the end of ourselves, we can come to the beginning of a new life.
We are a people who deeply fear death. While humans are biologically wired to evade death for as long as possible, we have become too adept at hiding from it, vilifying it, and—when it can be avoided no longer—letting the professionals take over.
Sixth-generation funeral director Caleb Wilde understands this reticence and fear. He had planned to get as far away from the family business as possible. He wanted to make a difference in the world, and how could he do that if all the people he worked with were . . . dead? Slowly, he discovered that caring for the deceased and their loved ones was making a difference—in other people’s lives to be sure, but it also seemed to be saving his own. A spirituality of death began to emerge as he observed:The family who lovingly dressed their deceased father for his burialThe act of embalming a little girl that offered a gift back to her grieving familyThe nursing home that honored a woman’s life by standing in procession as her body was taken awayThe funeral that united a conflicted community
Through stories like these, told with equal parts humor and poignancy, Wilde offers an intimate look into the business and a new perspective on living and dying