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Appointments with Heaven: The True Story of a Country Doctor's Healing Encounters with the Hereafter

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Overview

When Dr. Reggie Anderson is present at the bedside of a dying patient, something miraculous happens. Sometimes as he sits vigil and holds the patient’s hand . . . he can experience what they feel and see as they cross over. Because of these God-given glimpses of the afterlife—his “appointments with heaven”—Reggie knows beyond a doubt that we are closer to the next world than we think. Join him as he shares remarkable stories from his life and practice, including the tragedy that nearly drove him away from faith ...

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Appointments with Heaven: The True Story of a Country Doctor's Healing Encounters with the Hereafter

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Overview

When Dr. Reggie Anderson is present at the bedside of a dying patient, something miraculous happens. Sometimes as he sits vigil and holds the patient’s hand . . . he can experience what they feel and see as they cross over. Because of these God-given glimpses of the afterlife—his “appointments with heaven”—Reggie knows beyond a doubt that we are closer to the next world than we think. Join him as he shares remarkable stories from his life and practice, including the tragedy that nearly drove him away from faith forever. He reveals how what he’s seen, heard, and experienced has shaped what he believes about living and dying; how we can face the passing of our loved ones with the courage and confidence that we will see them again; and how we can each prepare for our own “appointment with heaven.” Soul-stirring and hope-filled, Appointments with Heaven is a powerful journey into the questions at the very core of your being: Is there more to life than this? What is heaven like? And, most important: Do I believe it enough to let it change me? Tyndale House Publishers

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

When Reggie Anderson first experienced the parting of the veil, he wasn't yet a doctor; he was just a medical student. As he stood by the bedside of a dying patient named Dennis at the VA hospital, he watched him die, but then first a warmth, then another presence filled the room. For the gentle man who would become a country doctor, this was the first of his miraculous encounters with salvation. A soul-stirring, hope-filled testament of faith.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781414380452
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/30/2013
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 82,129
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Dr. Reggie Anderson has practiced family medicine for over 25 years and was recently awarded the Frist Humanitarian Award by the Centennial Medical Center in Nashville. A graduate of the University of Alabama Medical School, Reggie is a physician with the Frist Clinic. He also serves as Chief of Staff of TriStar Ashland City Medical Center, as well as medical director of three nursing homes. Reggie and his wife Karen have four adult children and reside on a farm in Kingston Springs.
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Read an Excerpt

Appointments with HEAVEN

The true story of a country doctor's healing encounters with the hereafter


By REGGIE ANDERSON, JENNIFER SCHUCHMANN

Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2013 Reggie Anderson
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4143-8045-2



CHAPTER 1

THE PATIENT


SEPTEMBER 2011 ASHLAND CITY HOSPITAL, ASHLAND CITY, TENNESSEE

He was an eighty-two-year-old, proud Alabama boy, lying in the intensive care unit, and while I didn't yet know his time of death, I already knew the cause.

For more than a year, he had been struggling with myelodysplastic syndrome—his bone marrow had stopped producing the blood cells needed to fight off infection. He was immunocompromised and had developed a severe staph infection that was almost impossible to treat. His body had become septic, and the inflammation was devastating his organs. I knew his days were numbered, but I couldn't stand the thought of his passing.

I had known him all my life. He was a teacher and a farmer—intelligent and determined, proud and stubborn. He was also a man of great faith. He didn't see any reason to prolong his life on earth past the purpose God had for him. Like many of my elderly patients, he believed that he had an appointment with heaven and that Jesus was waiting for him on the other side.

As a doctor, I've seen what happens to the patient whose loved ones hang on too long. They desperately cling to their family member, demanding that doctors use extraordinary means to keep that person here when, really, the dying believer just wants to slip gently to the other side. Sometimes doctors can postpone a patient's death for weeks or months, but it often involves drastic measures with the person being kept alive by machines and feeding tubes. The patient's quality of life isn't what relatives expect when they initially make the decision, and it's rarely what a patient desires.

Whenever God called him home, he was ready.

I didn't want this patient kept alive by machines, and he didn't want it either. But I had good reasons to lengthen his life. He had a close, extended family, some of whom lived out of town and wanted a chance to say goodbye. With intensive medical intervention, I could postpone his death long enough to allow them the opportunity to see him one last time. His family wasn't ready to let him go, and I understood that in the most intimate way possible. I wasn't ready for him to be gone either.

I thought of other deaths I had witnessed—including an unforgettable experience that happened while I was a medical resident.


* * *

Throughout medical school I had taken care of dying patients, but this was the first time that I, as the senior resident, would be the one in charge when a patient died. I didn't know what to expect.

"Dr. Anderson," the elderly woman began, her voice starting to fade. "Will you hold my hand? I'm going to see Jesus, and I need an escort."

That night, I experienced the veil parting—the veil that separates this life from the next. As I held the dying woman's hands, I felt the warmth of her soul pass by my cheek when it left her body, swept up by an inexplicably cool breeze in an otherwise stagnant room. I smelled the familiar fragrance of lilac and citrus, and I knew the veil was parting to allow her soul to pass through.

Since that first patient, I've walked with countless others to the doorstep of heaven and watched them enter paradise. On many occasions, as I held hands with the dying, God allowed me to peer into heaven's entryway where I watched each patient slip into the next world.

I've sensed Jesus on the other side, standing in heaven's foyer, welcoming the dead who are made whole again. I've glimpsed surreal colors and sights and heard sounds more intense than anything I've ever experienced in this ordinary world. I've inhaled the scents of lilac, citrus, freshly carved cedar, and baking bread—more fragrant than I ever thought possible.

Sometimes I've even witnessed patients leave this world and come back. As they've shared their stories with me, I've often remembered the time early in my life when God allowed me to step into heaven's foyer, even though I no longer believed he was real.

The one thing these experiences have in common is the intensity of the sights, sounds, fragrances, and feelings that I sensed. Heaven is more real than anything we experience here, and the sense of peace, joy, and overwhelming love is beyond description.


* * *

Memories of other dying patients, as well as my personal glimpses into heaven, drifted through my mind as I sat at my patient's bedside in the ICU that day. I had every confidence that what awaited him would be more joyous than anything he'd ever experienced. But, selfishly, I wasn't ready to see him disappear through the opening. As the attending physician, the family looked to me for guidance. I could recommend a blood transfusion that would prolong his life for a few more days; with several transfusions, maybe I could extend it a week or more.

Or I could let him go.

Either way, I knew that he and his family would listen to me and do what I suggested.

I had a difficult decision to make, and my medical decisions were complicated by what my patients and I had experienced on heaven's side of the veil. But my struggle was even greater because of who I was.

I wasn't just the patient's physician—I was also his son.
(Continues...)


Excerpted from Appointments with HEAVEN by REGGIE ANDERSON, JENNIFER SCHUCHMANN. Copyright © 2013 Reggie Anderson. Excerpted by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Contents

Foreword by Mary Beth and Steven Curtis Chapman....................     xi     

PART 1: IF THERE'S A GOD, WHERE WAS HE?....................     1     

1. The Patient....................     3     

2. The first Dream....................     7     

3. The Day Santa Died....................     15     

4. Country Bred....................     23     

5. Watermelon Kin....................     31     

6. The Devils Went Down to Georgia....................     39     

7. Academic Idols....................     49     

8. The Lady of the Lab....................     59     

9. Beautiful Blonde Date from Out of State....................     67     

10. The Dream That Changed My Life....................     77     

11. Convincing Karen....................     87     

12. Past, Present, and Future Gifts....................     97     

PART 2: COULD THESE BE GLIMPSES OF HEAVEN?....................     103     

13. Departures....................     105     

14. Born into a New World....................     117     

15. God's Provision....................     127     

16. Stab in the Dark....................     135     

17. Moving Confirmations....................     145     

18. Healing Touch....................     155     

19. Glass Heart in Ashland City....................     165     

20. Queen Elizabeth....................     173     

21. The Smell of Good and Evil....................     183     

22. Lauren....................     193     

23. Angel Time....................     201     

24. Paired for Life....................     211     

25. Leaving Ashland City?....................     221     

PART 3: DO I BELIEVE WHAT I'VE SEEN?....................     233     

26. Torn veils....................     235     

27. Lifted veils....................     247     

28. Why Would God Allow This to Happen?....................     257     

29. A Different Kind of Grief observed....................     267     

30. Purpose in the Pain....................     277     

31. The Dream of Life....................     287     

32. A Presto! Italian for "See You Soon!"....................     299     

Epilogue....................     307     

A Final Note from Reggie....................     311     

Acknowledgments....................     315     

About the Authors....................     319     


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Customer Reviews

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( 20 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 20 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 11, 2013

    Dr. Anderson shares his Powerful story of faith and awareness of

    Dr. Anderson shares his Powerful story of faith and awareness of the real, constant and marvelous companionship of heaven; throughout his experience as a family physician, he shares evidence of how this life is more a sort of parenthesis that opens when we are born and closes when we pass away and go back home.
    Raised by strong Christians, Dr. Anderson’s childhood was wrapped in a precious trusting faith. However, tragedy made him wander away from God, to the point of denying him during his early college years. It was medicine itself that sparked his return; in this sense, “Appointments with Heaven” is also a first-row seat to the connection of science and God. Dr. Anderson shares how he went from thinking they were completely alien to each other to witnessing their deep, unbreakable connection. It was a blessing to read of how he usually shares this understanding with his fellow peers and making a stand for the truth and people's ultimate destination – either with or away from our Father.
    The simple and trusting faith of a child made me shed tears, but it also challenged me. I ended up questioning myself and my authenticity as a Christian. How many times do we just go on living and forget about the fact that God is right there with us ALL the time, anywhere we go? How often do we feel completely independent and wise to make our own decisions and assume that we are entitled to every single breath, when we actually are granted the blessing of life? How often do we think of eternity as something that starts when we pass away? Most certainly, if we ever think of that moment, this thought will be accompanied with feelings like fear or anxiety, but this need not be; what we know as death is just going back home. I sometimes wonder if we even understand that eternity is already here, every minute, every second, and we are already part of it; Dr. Anderson’s book is an encouraging reminder of its constant presence.
    Problems, financial crisis, death, accidents and all sorts of difficulties have happened to Dr. Anderson and his family. Through each of these, they have learned to look towards God, remain faithful and wait on Him... And He never lets anybody down!
    This is a highly recommendable book that provides both, comfort and insight into the marvels of the world that is constantly besides us.
    I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. This has not influenced my opinion on the book or on the author.

    24 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2014

    Coming from a DR. it means so much more.

    A very uplifting book for those who wonder about the afterlife. It will make a believer out of you. I gave this to my friend who's brother commited suicide(chapter 26)and she told me she is going to buy the book to share with family and friends as it gave her such hope for her brother.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 27, 2014

    Appointments with Heaven is probably the best recommendation of

    Appointments with Heaven is probably the best recommendation of the Tyndale Summer Reading Program. I've already recommended it to many people and plan to purchase more for those I know who have lost loved ones. I started the audio book a week before my father in law passed away. And finished it a week after his passing. I found it to be so much comfort to me and my family. 
    Author Reggie Anderson starts off telling his story of his growing up years, going off to college, and how became an atheist. He also describes his struggle with God after a tragedy happens that affected him deeply. I loved how Jesus came to him in a dream. That turned his life around. He then becomes a Christian, husband, father and a country doctor.
    He tells about his patients. And most importantly he tells how those who had passed to the other side. He saw Heaven through those moments. His descriptions were so vivid. The story about the blind woman who was able to see the angels was pretty awesome. He even saw hell through an evil man that passed. 
    I loved hearing how he comforted those who were left behind grieving the loss of their loved ones. My favorite part of the book was the last few chapters of the book. I won't tell about it but I will tell that it is amazing. I never will see a passing of a loved one the same again. I'm glad I was able to hear those words right after losing my beloved father in law. Such an inspiration and great comfort. 
    Highly highly recommended 
    10 plus stars!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 20, 2014

    Hopeful and Thought Provoking. This book is easy to read and har

    Hopeful and Thought Provoking. This book is easy to read and hard to put down. Dr. Anderson reveals his visions of heaven, and his experiences confirm that God is real, and God is good. Even through family tragedy, there is hope. His story is thought-provoking, personal, and intriguing. I am encouraged by the message, and I think the Dr. is blessed to have such insights. This is very well written, with beautiful anecdotes, and his faith building conclusions are clearly explained.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 8, 2014

    This wonderful story is the true testimony of a country doctor a

    This wonderful story is the true testimony of a country doctor about the proof that heaven does exist, it is a wonderful place we can look forward to entering when our time on earth is over, and we shouldn’t be afraid of dying. Even the smell of heaven is fresh, sweet, and welcoming. If you have been fearful of this unknown place, this is a must read book. You will enjoy every encounter that this doctor describes. By the time you finish reading this book, you’ll have a whole new attitude toward death.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 2, 2014

    For me, the best part of this book is the author's honesty in ho

    For me, the best part of this book is the author's honesty in how he questioned his faith after the horrific murders of the Alday men during his youth and through his college years. I think it is a familiar experience where people are brought up in the church and have very firm beliefs and a firm foundation, only to flounder when they attend college or get out on their own. I always appreciate it when authors honestly share of their struggles or questioning of their faith.

    This is a great book and an honest accounting of a man seeking to find his way in life. Sometimes he got knocked down and experienced disappointment, but he found his way to faith in Christ and was able to use his faith to minister to others at some of the most difficult times in their lives.

    Sometimes I find that when people tell their life story in a book, it comes off as a little self-indulgent. However, I found Anderson's book refreshing and encouraging. It wasn't at all self-important or condescending. It was simply a story of his life and journey of faith. I enjoyed it very much and it was a very quick read.

    As a warning, some parts of it at the beginning were very difficult to read when Anderson recounted the Alday massacre. It might turn off some readers, but you can skip over the parts recounting the murders if it bothers you.

    This book has a companion devotional book which is also excellent. If you are looking for a great non-fiction book with a supplemental devotional book (sold separately) this is a great choice. I actually read the devotional book first, so you can read them in either order.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2014

    Loved it

    I'm not really a "reader" but I like books that I'm going to learn something from. I recently went through loosing my mom and was looking for a book that would lift me up. It's very easy to read and I got through it very quickly. I highly recommend it!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 10, 2014

    What an amazing book! I love it! But make sure you have a Kle

    What an amazing book! I love it! But make sure you have a Kleenex. Dr. Reggie Anderson is a Tennessee doctor who has been with many patients as they cross from this side of heaven to the other. And God has given him and some of his patients dreams of heaven. In this book he details his story – from the child who trusted Christ to the teen who turned away from God and then the doctor who returned to God. He also is friends with the Steven Curtis Chapmans so he includes narrative about their tragic loss of Maria and the good that has come out of that loss. What a remarkable story and one I highly recommend to all!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 6, 2014

    Great Book! Appointments with Heaven is an uplifting book from

    Great Book!

    Appointments with Heaven is an uplifting book from Reggie Anderson and his experiences of sitting with his patients as they breathe their last breath.  For many people that would be a depressing time but he offers hope,  the hope that God gives that we will see our loved ones again.

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  • Posted July 3, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Dr. Reggie Anderson feels something when a Christian passes on a

    Dr. Reggie Anderson feels something when a Christian passes on and enters heaven. As an doctor, he has seen many enter eternity and felt that same feeling each time a Christian meets Jesus.

    In his book, Appointments with Heaven, Dr. Anderson gives the story of his life all the way to his practice as an ER doctor and physician.

    He begins with his childhood and an event that would change his life, his beliefs, and ultimately his faith. While upset at this event, blaming God the entire time, Dr. Anderson came to see God for who He is, not how Dr. Anderson perceived Him.

    From there, the book goes into his medical practice, how God used him in various means, and the little glimpses of heaven as the faithful Christians left this life for the life to come.

    A fascinating book about struggle, doubt, hurts, and ultimately; healing.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2014

    Excellent

    A truly believable story regarding death and that we truly do have a wonderful life to look forward to. I think that this is a must read for every Christian and to those that have a difficult time believing in an afterlife.

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  • Posted April 28, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    After reading the first chapter I was hooked. From the first few

    After reading the first chapter I was hooked. From the first few pages, I got chills (the good kind) and my heart was gently touched by Dr. Anderson’s tone and easy flow of words. What a blessing Dr. Anderson has received; the ability to experience the intuitive gift of God.

    I recommend this book to anyone who is struggling with life or their beliefs, anyone going through hard times—particularly the loss, or expectant loss of a loved one. I’ve no doubt you will be blessed and have a new perspective on God’s and timeline.

    Cover: Love it
    Title: Love it
    Publisher: Tyndale Momentum
    Pages: 336
    Pace: Steady
    First Lines: He was an eighty-two-year old, proud Alabama boy, lying in the intensive care unit, and while I didn't yet know his time of death, I already knew the cause.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a Review Copy free NetGalley. I was not required to write a positive review. The options I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2014

    Wonderful

    This was an amazing read and an awesome journey from childhood faith to a loss of faith, and then his journey back towards our Creator and to an even deeper and more amazing faith and love for Jesus.

    I love that the author's story is told but never do you have the feeling that Jesus is anything less than the center of everything that is taking place.

    I often times wonder what stories and secrets that we hide from one another thinking them too unbelievable to share with others... and every time I read or hear another person's journey with God I am humbled and so amazed.

    I love that these families chose to share their stories of God's love.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2014

    So good!

    An extraordinary book! So powerful an uplifting!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    wow good book love it

    wow good book love it

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    Posted March 13, 2014

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    Posted November 25, 2014

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    Posted February 2, 2014

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    Posted November 7, 2013

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    Posted April 20, 2014

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