Waking Up in Heaven

Waking Up in Heaven

A True Story of Brokenness, Heaven, and Life Again

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On December 10, 2009, Crystal McVea, a thirty-two-year-old mother of four, stopped breathing. Her face turned a dark shade of blue, then black. Her mother screamed for help, and a nurse tried to revive her . . . to no avail. Today, Crystal does not remember what happened in that hospital room during the nine minutes she was unconscious and unable to breathe on her own. She has no memory of the panic and the rushing nurses and the loud cries of “Code Blue.” She simply remembers drifting off.

And she remembers waking up in heaven. For most of Crystal’s broken life, she felt utterly beyond the reach of God— if God was even real. Then came December 10—and the nine minutes that changed everything. Waking Up in Heaven invites readers along on a journey to witness the relentless pursuit of God in a life that was shattered and seemingly beyond hope, an awe-inspiring account of love, forgiveness, and redemption, and the healing power of God’s presence.

And that is why I want to share my story with the world. Because I was a skeptic and a sinner, and I didn’t believe in God or in heaven. But God is real. Heaven is real. And God’s love for us is the realest thing of all.
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  • Howard Books | 
  • 272 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781476711874 | 
  • April 2013
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Waking Up in Heaven

The remarkable story of an everyday woman, plagued with guilt and skepticism, who was dramatically changed by the nine minutes she spent in heaven.

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Waking Up in Heaven


SOMEDAY SOON, ONE OF MY PRECIOUS THREE-YEAR-OLD twins is going to ask me the question “Mommy, what happened to you when you died?”

Someday they will overhear me telling my story to someone and want to know more about it. They will look at me with their big, innocent eyes and try to make sense of what they’re hearing. It isn’t always easy explaining what happened even to adults, so how am I going to explain it... see more

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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Waking Up in Heaven includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Crystal McVea. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Introduction

Waking Up in Heaven is the firsthand story of Crystal McVea and the day she died for nine minutes, went to heaven, and stood before God. In this remarkable autobiographical narrative, Crystal shares with readers her experience of walking with God toward the gates of heaven—a place so full of light and love that she did not want to return to Earth. But Crystal was revived—miraculously—and came back to consciousness in a hospital room with frantic doctors, nurses, and her own mother. Crystal’s encounter with God made her a believer, despite her troubled, dark past. In Waking Up in Heaven Crystal shares her story—the good and the bad—in the hopes of spreading God’s message of love and redemption.

Topics & Questions for Discussion

1. Waking Up in Heaven opens with a letter from Laura Schroff, author of An Invisible Thread. How does this letter help frame Crystal’s story? What do you think made Laura pay attention to Cryst see more

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