Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Birthday Bash Day Three-And Some Heaven

Congratulations to Ruth Stiles from Life's Journey. Number 10 was chosen from a random drawing, and Ruth was the 10th commenter. Thanks again to Kelli at Blush and Bashful Baby for the adorable bib. Oh...the adorable baby model from yesterdays post is not my baby. I swiped the photo from Kelli's site. He is a cutie though.

On to Day Three...

Today's prize is the children's book, God Gave Us Heaven, by one of my favorite authors, Lisa T. Bergren. Here is a description of the book I copied from

Product Description
As the sun rises on her snow-covered world, Little Cub wonders aloud…

“What is heaven like?”

With tender words, her Papa describes a wonderful place, free of sadness and tears, where God warmly welcomes his loved ones after their life on earth is over. Little Cub and Papa spend the day wandering their beautiful, invigorating arctic world while she asks all about God’s home: How do we get to heaven? Will we eat there? Will I get to see you in heaven? Papa patiently answers each question, assuring her that…

“Heaven will be full of everything good.”

This gentle story provides satisfying answers for a young child’s most difficult questions about what happens after this life, inviting “little cubs” to find comfort in knowing that God Gave Us Heaven.

Also available:
God Gave Us You
God Gave Us Two
God Gave Us Christmas

About the Author
Lisa Tawn Bergren is the award-winning author of nearly thirty titles, totaling more than one million books in print. She writes in a broad range of genres, from adult fiction to devotional. God Gave Us Heaven is Lisa’s fourth children’s book, following in the tradition of the best-selling God Gave Us You. She makes her home in Colorado, with her husband, Tim, and their children, Olivia, Emma, and Jack.

To enter to win a copy of Lisa's book, just leave a comment at this post and tell me what you would like to do first when you get to Heaven. Special thanks to Lisa for contributing a copy of this book for my birthday bash. The drawing closes tonight at 9 pm EST and, because of postage costs, is open only to US and Canadian residence.

Here's a little something I wrote about Heaven in June of last year. It is tightly based on a conversation I had with my daughter...yes...she really does use the word wonderful quite often.

Where Lions Won't Bite (first published on June 23, 2008)

Pumpkindoodle tilted her chin upward, but the corners of her rosebud pink lips pointed toward her toes. Something was troubling my reflective daughter.


“What is it sweetie?”

“Can you please tell me more about Heaven? I don’t want to be dead and live anywhere without you and Daddy. I’m scared.”

Quietly exhaling, I sat still with her on my lap. I wasn’t sure where to start, so I kissed her worried, wrinkled, forehead and said, “Oh darling, Heaven is the most wonderful place.”

We had discussed Heaven and death a few times already that week, but each question I answered seemed to have left her more unsettled. Four-year-olds want answers that mesh with their immediate realities. Pumpkindoodle cannot clearly fathom the time differences between “next month” and “next year.” She cannot imagine life without her family. She only knows what it is like to be a little girl and that is her yardstick for measuring the future.

“But what kind of skins will I have?”

I bit my lip to prevent me from giggling...I think it's precious that she pluralizes skin. Then I sighed and thought, Oh boy, she goes straight for the unknowns. Why couldn’t she ask me about the streets..I'm pretty sure that somewhere in scripture there is a reference to heavenly streets being paved with gold.

“Well, I am not sure. I think God will give you a new and wonderful body.”

Her frown deepened.

“I don’t want a new body. I want to keep this body that God already made me in. I love it. It is so beautiful.”

Smiling at her precious innocence and admiration for God’s artistry, I kissed her again, and as I did, I noticed a bandage on her foot.

“Well, your new body will be even more beautiful and it won’t get any boo boos on it ever.

The corner of her mouth rose slightly.

“That is a very good thing. But I’m still not sure I want to go there. Will you go with me?”

“No one knows when they are going to go to Heaven, but I promise you that I will be there someday.”

I decided not to add that I would probably arrive at Jesus’ feet long before she did. That would undoubtedly cause more concern.

“I just really like living here in this beautiful world,” she continued.

“We do live in a beautiful world. God made it so. But people made it messy in many ways by doing some ugly things. Heaven, will be perfect. There won’t be any mean people in Heaven. No monsters. No scary spiders or unfriendly snakes. In fact, when you get to Heaven, I bet Jesus will let you pet a real lion. And do you know why?"

She shook her head no.

Lions won’t bite you because only gentle, friendly lions live in Heaven.”

The face of my animal-loving girl gleamed.

“Wow! That will be really wonderful. Can I run with the Cheetah’s too?”

“I think you will. And if so, can I run with you?”

“Yes, Mommy!”

“Do you know what else is great about Heaven? You’ll be able to meet people that lived on Earth before you were born, like my MemMem, and Jesus’ mommy.”

Suddenly, my marathon talker was silent, her smile radiant.

“And do you want to know the very best part about Heaven? It’s that you get to hug Jesus.”

“Ohhhh, mommy. That is going to be so awesome and so amazing!”

Then her smile wavered. I bit my lip and thought, I cannot possibly top hugging Jesus. What on earth is bothering her now?

“I don’t have to die and go to Heaven now….right Mommy? It will be a long time when I go to be with Jesus right?”

“I think so sweetie.” Oh Lord, let it be so, please let it be so. “But whenever you get there, I promise you that you will not feel sad for one second. You will be very safe. All you will feel is love.”

“That is so wonderful! Thank you for telling me all that great stuff about heaven. I really want to pet a lion without him biting me.”

I hugged her tight and traced my index finger around her tiny freckle, and I kissed her again. And then I felt a tender sensation in my soul. I cannot imagine Heaven being more beautiful than this moment right here, right now. But it will be. One day, my daughter and I will pet a lion, right after we give Jesus a big bear hug.

The wolf will romp with the lamb, the leopard sleep with the kid. Calf and lion will eat from the same trough, and a little child will tend them. Cow and bear will graze the same pasture, their calves and cubs grow up together, and the lion eat straw like the ox. The nursing child will crawl over rattlesnake dens, the toddler stick his hand down the hole of a serpent. Neither animal nor human will hurt or kill on my holy mountain. The whole earth will be brimming with knowing God-Alive, a living knowledge of God ocean-deep, ocean-wide.

Isaiah 11:6-9 The Message


nanja said...

First thing I'd like to do when I arrive in heaven is to give Jesus a loving hug and then meet my sisters and parents who I dearly miss.

Vicki said...

I need to get that book or my two granddaughters! ♥ Hey, friend - how are you?


Vicki said...

I meant to type "FOR" my

Natasha Vaughn, Cake Designer said...

what a great book. My daughter would love it.

Jennifer said...

I would love this book to read to my boys. My Mom passed away in April and we talk about heaven quite a bit around here :)


judybrittle said...

The very first thing I would do when I arrive in heaven is hold my 4 year old granddaughter and never let her go. Let her know how much I love her and missed her. And finally be truly happy again.

Brimful Curiosities said...

When I first get to heaven I hope to finally learn the answers to all of life's unknowns and meet Jesus, our Savior. Thanks for the giveaway.

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a wonderful book. I know a child that I could give it to.

Congrats to the winner of the bib!

angeljoy said...

What sweet preciousness! I long for my girl (who is 5) to be in heaven with us one day. How awesome a task before us to teach them of spiritual things. I pray for wisdom everyday!

Wibeche og Rune said...

This sounds like a very great book:)


Tara said...

See my Jesus, then hug those I love who went before me. But, hugging and seeing my Jesus may take awhile because I have lots of questions for Him! :) Can't wait to worship and sing in Heaven...oh my word! We have the book God Gave Us You, would love this one, too. Great book!

Mary Moss said...

This is so touching. I really started to tear up. You did a beautiful job of explaining heaven and alleviating your daughter's fears.

Becky Welch said...

I love these books, but have never seen this one! I will want to find my grandparents.

Karen said...

This book looks amazing. I have never heard of it. The first thing I will do when I get to heaven (after I am in awe of being in the presence of my Lord)is hug my younger brother who died three years ago. I miss him - he's never met my two-year old daughter so I have a lot to fill him in on.

Jenn said...

The first thing I want to do when I get to heaven is see Jesus and thank Him for all he has done for me. Then I want to see my Grandpa and have him sing to me like he did when I was a little girl.

Anonymous said...

I think the first thing I do when I get to heaven will be to kneel at Jesus feet, look in his face and say "It was all worth it."

Colored With Memories said...

i can't wait to hug my sweet savior and be reunited with earthly love ones.

we love updating our children's library...this sounds like a great depiction of heaven and i'd love a copy of it.

thanks angela!


Brittany said...

These are by far some of my FAVORITE books. This is one we don't have though! :)

Gretchen said...

Your little story about Pumpkindoodle couldn't be any more adorable. I'd love to win this for my nephew's b'day (4 on the 18th)

He And Me + 3 said...

Sounds like an awesome book.

Elizabeth said...

That sounds like a wonderful bedtime story!

Lois Lane II said...

After I spend time with Christ and collapse at His feet and thank Him for never giving up on me, I want to see my family who is already there. =)

Carol said...

Oh, Angela!!!!! This is going to be in my heart all day. What a beautifully written story. I am typing through tears! Thank you for blessing me today.

Madeline said...

That looks like a great book. It would be wonderful as my little guy gets older.

Heidi said...

This would be a wonderful book to have. It sounds really great.

Kelly said...

I would love to sing with the angels in the heavenly band when I get to Heaven.
Your writing was beautiful! There's nothing more precious than the faith of a child.

Mrs. Sidney said...

hmmm...I would have to say one of the first things I would want to do would be meet up with my Uncle Ron and chat about all the lessons I learned from his short life.

I think Noodle would love this book.

Classic MaMa said...

:) Wonderful.

We have God Gave Us You and it's great.

Carol said...

Such a sweet, sweet story between you and your daughter.

misty said...

the book sounds great... i would love to read it to my boys!

Heather of the EO said...

What a great book! Your birthday is getting clooooseeer :)

Sara@Interpret Sass said...

That book looks so sweet, I may have to search it out next time I'm at Barnes&noble...if I don't win, of course.
The first thing I want to do when I get to Heaven is HUG JESUS! But maybe that is obvious so next I'll say meet,see, hug my brother who died 10days after he was born. He'd be my older brother had he lived. And if the RAPTURE happens and that's why I'm in Heaven then After the first two things, I want to meet all my bloggy friends!!!! So we all can do the happy dance together! Wouldn't that be FUN?
Ok, so my new blog is :
Then you can read WHY I had to move out of Butterville.

Amydeanne said...

sounds like a good book!

Nina said...

First thing I would do is bow at Jesus' feet and thank him for dying on the cross then meet all my love ones who are already there

Cindy said...

Sounds like a great book.
Almost your birthday - Are you having a HAPPY WEEK???? :)

MaryBeth said...

Just in case you're holding over comments... I'd love to win this book. In my first moments in Heaven I hope to first to sit at Jesus' feet and then go catch up with my little brother who beat me there.

Muthering Heights said...

What sweet books!

Krystal said...

OH I hope I'm not too late we love these books

Slowly Dying.. said...

I know that I am late with posting but I got in my own way yesterday and couldn't "come over to play." However, I just wanted to say that we have God Gave Us Two, it's an awesome book that our kids have asked to be read to them "again." Neither can read yet, but they "read" that book!


My Walk With God said...

This is such an awesome topic. I'm so joyful reading this post.

The first thing I'll do when I finally get to see Heaven, is to kneel down in HIS feet and lavish HIM with my praises and gratefulness , telling him that Life has been meaningful and colorful because of HIM, because of HIS Great Love!!

I wish I can find this book in Philippine bookstores.This is such a great book not only for kids but also for adults who never ceases to have a child like heart.

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