Woman said she woke up in heaven, changes opinion about existence of God

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ALTUS, Okla. — Many have long debated the authenticity of an afterlife — even the very existence God. Crystal McVea was one of them.

The Oklahoma woman said she had given up believing there was a God who loved her until she died and went to heaven.

McVea told KFOR-TV that in 2009 she went to the hospital for a routine surgery. But things went wrong and she flat-lined. Medical records prove she had no pulse for nine minutes.

But what can’t be proven is McVea’s claims of seeing heaven, angels and God Himself.

“The moment my eyes closed, there He was,” she said. “Two angels to my left, the most glorious tunnel of light that I could ever describe.”

McVea said prior to her heavenly encounter, she had dismissed the idea of God.

“I made up my mind,” she said. “There were two choices. One, God was real and He didn’t love me, or two, there was no God.”

McVea said she lived a hard life — a life undeserving of God’s grace (if there was a God). She recounted years of secrets and shame: sexual abuse, teen pregnancy, abortion, drugs and divorce.

“I was the adulteress. I was the murderer. I was the sinner, the liar, the thief,” she said. “I was everything at one point throughout my life that we read about in the Bible.”

After her nine minutes in heaven, McVea said she changed her mind about the existence of God, His grace and love. Critics say her experience is the result of an oxygen-deprived brain.

But Dr. Richard Smith of Mercy Hospital said scientific studies on near death experiences support McVea’s claims.

“There’s enough evidence from individuals who have experienced this to suggest there’s a commonality, the spiritual life has reality and the existence of God is real,” he said. “And that’s what these people say. It changes their life.”

McVea said it’s changed hers. McVea now spends her days ministering to the homeless, to those she meets in strip clubs and comforting those who are terminally ill. She said the next time she goes to heaven she wants to hear ‘good job’ from the deity she once thought didn’t exist.

In addition to her outreach ministry, McVea has also written a book, a New York Times best seller called “Waking Up in Heaven: A True Story of Brokenness, Heaven, and Life Again.”

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14 comments

    • Mike De Fleuriot

      You better hope that she choose the right God. Imagine if you get there and it’s Lord Krishna or Allah. All those Sundays in Church kept making him more and more angry with you.

    • John Bentley

      Lets just for a moment say there is a God. Let’s go a step further and say it is the God of the Bible. Let’s keep going and say that everything in the Bible is true. Having sail all of that does not by one iota make her story true or even interesting. The facts are that 1. She should have gone to hell for non-belief not heaven, 2. We already know scientifically what happens when your brain is deprived of oxygen, and 3. The doctor who is sited as some kind of expert, is not an expert in near death phenomenon. He is not even a neurologist. If you rate a believer stick to faith. Facts are not on your side…

  • Chris

    It is unfortunate for what I see here is someone willing in the next three years to release her book. Sadly many people will believer her non-sense and she will make millions. I do not see that she had an experience other then seeing a way to make a ton of money by selling her story. Mark my words she will have a book released her soon. What is also sad is there are no conclusive scientific studies that support anyone’s claim to an NDE.

  • W.K. Sexton

    God apparently sent her back to successfully complete her trial here. He didn’t put us all in Heaven to start with because he knew we couldn’t appreciate the good, unless we had experienced the bad. It’s hard to look around at His creation and believe higher intelligence created the beauty. Our bodies are miraculous…the eye itself is amazing. Think how wonderful a perfect place she and so many others have seen will be. May God help us contribute to the here and now first. Right now, we need to limit campaign contributions so the wealthy can’t own our elected officials and force taxpayer-financed Public broadcasters to give unlimited airtime to political debate so candidates won’t have to buy so much expensive advertising. The high cost of getting elected is the worst problem in America, besides sin.