Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven...not quite

I never intended this blog to be a place that I would have to defend my son ALex's indentity let alone the journey that he and he alone has endured. I started this blog as a "fun" thing to do and with the intention of maybe sharing some hope and bits of wisdom that has been learned through the struggles. I have taken this blog down from time to time not sure what to do with it and NEVER wanting to make it appear as if any of the people that I write about are extraordinary individuals. The people that I write about and share some of their accomplishments(Scott Fedor, Steve Gleason, and Kory Wiita are examples)are people that got thrust into extraordinary situations and have chosen to embrace the struggles they face head on and work hard to something positive with those struggles. AS Scott said the other day to ALex, "the challenge does not mean a stop sign, it just means that you might hve to figure out how to do that thing that you want to do differently." WHat a wise piece of advice.

This past week a movie based off the book Heaven is for Real came out. I have not read the book, do not plan to, and am strongly opposed to the movie. Let's just say that the Burpo book and the book that has Alex's name listed as coauthor(The Boy WHo Came Back From Heaven),as does the Tyndale Publishing website(can not understand how that can be), have a few things in common which I will not get into on here. I am trying to defend my son and truth. Here is something to think about....

It is both puzzling and painful to watch the book The Boy who Came Back from Heaven to not only continue to sell, but to continue, for the most part, to not be questioned. I could post facts and try to dispel many of the things contained within the pages of that book(have done a bit of that), I could continue to try to point out how Biblically off the book is(a few strategically placed scriptures does not make a book Biblically sound) and how it leads people away from the bible not to it (have done that as have others including John Macarthur and Phil Johnson), I could talk about how much it has hurt my son tremendously and even make financial statements public that would prove that he has not received monies from the book nor have a majority of his needs been funded by it (a fund that was set aside by a friend a few years ago has actually been paying for most things in the past few years but that fund is dwindling), I could.....but it seems like many people want to believe what they are given despite the wrong that it may be doing or the wrong that was done in the making of it. When Alex first tried to tell a "pastor" how wrong the book was and how it needed stopped, ALex was told that the book was blessing people. Ok...first, ALex said that while he was struggling physically and trusting this person as someone who seemed to be concerned so the person was invalidating Alex's feeling while justifying the wrong that Alex was trying to make that person aware of. . The person told Alex to "trust" him. ALex is the ONLY one that supposedly had the experiences being written about(ALex was a 6 year old and coming out of major brain trauma...note I am not saying what is true and not just that Alex was a kid with major brain trauma which alone should raise questions as to validity) Alex is the ONLY one who has endured not only a horrific set of injuries, but having his journey capitalized on. His struggles are NOT past tense nor is the "story." The ones making money from the book are NOT the ones staying up through the night, struggling for their breath, or were they the ones at six years old, waking up unable to move or breathe and in a strange place after last remember seeing a car coming right at the car he was riding in. What I have walked through with Alex over the past nine years has nearly broken me personally and spiritually. I have wept so deeply for what I have watched my children go through, been made aware of how ignorant I was of some things, how selfish I was, and how Biblically illiterate I was which allowed me to be deceived! Sure, I had read my Bible ALOT, but I had not studied it. I had listened to teachings but probably enjoyed more ear tickling than I am still even aware of(for that I repent and have experienced deep sorrow) I am so thankful that God is so merciful and patient. I am thankful that God allowed me to go ahead and fall for the junk that I did(and it was that junk)for I am fully aware of what it feels like to be pulled in. There are many who are scamming and using the Word of God to do it. They are good, especially if you are not digging into your Bible and truly studying it. They study their audience and even read "success" books to try to build better and bigger..."ministries/businesses". Please, examine what you see and read. I see many things from a different vantage point because of how much I have witnessed and am witnessing first hand...not second hand. I will remain puzzled and remain seeking truth in the Word of God! One more time..ALex did not write the book and it is not blessing him! Saying that it is blessing others to try to justify its wrong is just that...justification of wrong!

Something else that is really important is missing from the book that ALex is identified with, the gospel message. Following is a video of Todd Friel explaining the gospel to someone who does not know it a well as an audio recording from a guy named Justin Peters....

If you listen to nothing else of the recording by Justin, please listen in to the last ten minutes. The bottom line in these heaven visit books is that they exclude the gospel message. Heaven is a real place but not everyone will get there. There is a way and that is through Jesus Christ.

The gospel message...

Justin Peters...

ALex's name and identity are being used against his wishes(I have spoken before and posted about it that Alex has tried to publically speak out against the book), on something that he is opposed to and knows to be in error according to the Bible. How can this be going on??? Great question....How did it get this far?..another great question...sometimes bits of truth can become so twisted and distorted that it seems impossible to straighten out. Your words can get taken, twisted, and out right fabricated! His name is Alex Malarkey and "his story" is yet to be written!...don't worry, not planning to do a book:) just stating a fact.


Anonymous said...

I have been so uneasy about seeing "Heaven is for Real". I did read "The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven", but I have to admit, I questioned many things and still do. I am just not sure if these visits to Heaven really happened (with Alex or Colton and a few others) or if they were a dream or vision, or just imagination of a child. It's hard as a Christian to discern things, especially when all your Christian friends are taking the book as total truth and trying to convince you of the same. I was just discussing this today with my mother, both books and now a movie; how can we know for sure this is true? I'm not sure what is true and what isn't, but I am sad to hear that Alex is upset about the book. I hope you will be able to speak out in the future; Christians who have read the book need to know the truth. It is sad that people are just filling their pockets with the profits from the book.

CIndy Davis said...

I love you and Alex and am so sorry for your struggles. But you give so much insight to the study of scripture. We never know why we face the trials of life we face, but I always want to think it is to further Gods kingdom and help people know him. You are a strong loving mother and I commend you for all you do. Alex is sooo blessed to have you in his life. And you also are blessed with a wonderful Son. you are a great friend and mentor as well. I am so happy to know you and have you as a prayer partner in situations that you only know if you are touched by SCI.

Cindy Davis

Pastor Andrew said...

Wow! Thanks for sharing. I praise God for His grace in your life!

Michelle said...

Thank you for sharing, Beth. I'm with you. It's completely incomprehensible to me how people could prefer a lie over the truth. John 3:19 says they do it because their works are evil, but I'll still never be able to wrap my mind around it.

Freedoms.Wings said...

Hi Beth, I happened to come across Hank Hanegraaff's show today (May 9th) on my way home from work and listened to your conversation with him. I wanted to research more about what you have gone through and came across your blog. After reading more about what happened, I am very disturbed about Tyndale. I know that this may be more of a trend now among the major publishing groups; and even though it makes me sad, I am very grateful that people are having the courage to tell the truth and hold them accountable.

I wrote Tyndale a letter just a few minutes ago and hope that even just one person there reads it, listens, and makes a decision about whether they will continue to support such actions in the company they work for. I know your intention is not to harm the company or any other individuals but to bring truth to light and help people who may believe a fabrication, and not to trust everything they read even when it is promoted by authors or other people they respect. I agree with you, that ultimately truth stands and is the only thing valuable when we meet Jesus Christ after we go home.

I really wish I could go to Tyndale and speak face to face with them, ask them to really consider what they are doing and show them the evidence that I cannot even show them but they would have to experience for themselves. A faceless letter does not have much of an impact sometimes, I'm afraid.

Sorry for the long message, I just want to stand by you as a friend and sister and am so glad your blog gave an option to comment to you! I was hoping I could tell you what this meant to me today. Only God's word and the truth he reveals to us really matter, no matter what anyone else tells us or thinks. I wish you and your family the very best and hope I can say "hi" one day.


Anonymous said...

I was about to read this book but decided to look at the reviews and background information before I started. I would like to start by saying, I am so sorry for your and your families hardships. I can't even imagine going through such a trial. My purpose in commenting is just of pure curiosity ...if the book was filled with such inaccuracies and lies then why not set the record straight with what truly happened? I am of LDS faith and so I am not using others NDE as a rock in which to build my faith but I am genuinely confused about what you and Alex consider inaccuracies within the book and what actually did happen. I did read that you don't intend to write a book to right the wrongs of the previous book but it might be helpful to write a blog post explaining what really did happen. I'm not interested in the glamour of what lies beyond because I believe I have a testimony of what lies beyond the veil and the true story of what happened to Alex would be more helpful then hurtful to those who have read or are contemplating reading the book.

Anonymous said...

I am glad that I borrowed the book and didn't pay for it. I read "the" book in one day. After finishing it, I did a Google search to see how Alex was doing today. To my disappointment I found your link within the top three.

I was ticked off to say the least, mostly because I had been had. Fooled.

I am not going through anything traumatic. I am not looking for a blessing. I am though like many people searching for, Jesus.

NDE's have always intrigued me, and have made Jesus seem to be more tangible. Stories like these are always thought provoking, but I never take them as Gospel.

After reading your blog I wonder why you don't sue the writer and publisher, especially as it seems that legal documents were never passed between publisher and Alex.Also, if the book is stated as being true, but Alex never had the experiences that are written, then wouldn't this be defamation, especially where it is against your religious beliefs.

There are many questions on both sides. But only God can and will judge.

I pray for you, Alex and your family for joy and peace.

Anonymous said...

My sister died in 1970 when I was seven. One sad night shortly thereafter,I made up a story that I felt her touch my hand when I was in my mother's bed. My mother whole heartedly believed my lie, and shared it with family, friends and clergy. I was mortified! When I came clean a few years later it was nearly impossible to convince her that I had made it up. Just recently she referred to my "experience" again! I couldn't believe I had to convince that it did not happen all over again. No wonder people are able to profit from deception. The living God has spoken. Believe Him! 2 Tim. 2:15, 2 Tim 3:16,17