90 Minutes in Heaven is not a new story. It was originally published in 2004, so it may be one that people are already familiar with, as it has sold 7 million copies. However, there is a movie version being released, so the book has been re-released.
The movie is presented by Giving Films and will be in theaters everywhere September 11, 2015. The movie stars Hayden Christensen and Kate Bosworth, in addition to Michael W. Smith, Fred Thompson, Dwight Yoakam and Jason Kennedy. The film is rated PG-13 ( for intense accident and injury images).
This is the first film from Giving Films. They will be donating all of their profits to charities and ministries, such as Christian Alliance for orphans, Faith Bridge Foster Care, Hire Heroes USA, Hope International, LifeWater, Street Grace, and World Vision. When you see a Giving Films movie in theaters, you can visit their website and select which charities you would like to receive the profits from your ticket.
ABOUT THE BOOK
This is directly from the press release:
Pastor Don Piper died January 18, 1989 when a semi-tractor truck crushed his car. Declared dead by the first rescue workers to arrive on the scene, Don’s body lay under a tarp for the next 90 minutes. Don’s soul, meanwhile, was experiencing love, joy, and life like he’d never known before. Don was in Heaven.
When another pastor’s prayers helped bring Don back to life, he became a living miracle! Yet this is one miracle Don wished never happened. Heaven’s bliss was replaced by excruciating pain and emotional turmoil. With the support and prayers of his beloved Eva, their three kids, and friends near and far, Don clings to his faith in God and fights to regain a semblance of his previous life. The Piper family’s incredible true story of perseverance and overcoming the challenges of life – and death – will bring hope and encouragement to all who see it.
This book is the “movie edition”. Now since this is the first time I have read it, I am not 100% sure what is new or different about it. Of course, there is a “personal update from Don Piper” written in 2014, that was obviously not in the original.
In his book, Piper begins with the story of his accident and quickly we get to the part we are all waiting for- his time in heaven. He tells about being greeted by those he knew that had passed on and of the wonderful, heavenly music. Now, I can be skeptical of some “near-death experiences”, especially those that give a physical description of Jesus or things like that. Thankfully, Piper’s story isn’t like that, and nothing that I read seemed all out of line with Scripture. And Piper has definitely been using his experience to point others to God.
The book also deals with the extremely difficult recovery process Piper had to go through and eventually how he accepted his situation and began sharing his story with others. My main criticism is actually in regards to the photo section and not the main body of the book.
Personally, I wish there were more photos of Don and his family before the accident and during the recovery process. The majority of the photos are of Don sharing his story more recently.
At the end of the book, there is a chapter, Stories of Encouragement that includes letters from people who have been touched by his story. He also includes his favorite Bible verses and quotations. I’m definitely looking forward to checking out the film as well.