Stories of God’s


kleuren berg van GodIt doesn’t matter if they nearly died in an auto accident or a drug overdose, giving birth or attempting suicide.


Among the thousands of people who chose to share their near-death experiences with the Near Death Experience Research Foundation, the report is often the same: They come back with a profound understanding of God’s love.

Theologians sometimes talk about the omnibenevolence of God, the idea that God’s grace and charity is unlimited or infinite. For many who talk about encountering God, this term comes closest to the reality they describe. Here is a sampling of what some NDErs had to say about God’s love:

Love is clearly an important part of near-death experiences. This experience of deep love often carries within it an affirmation of unity or oneness between all people or even all things.

About 400 people volunteered answers to a long survey we offered, including this question: “During your experience, did you encounter any specific information/awareness regarding love?”

The results: 58.1 percent of those volunteers said yes, 32.4 percent said no and the rest were uncertain.

In the anecdotal responses they provided, I was struck by the remarkable consistency. This consistency could not be explained merely by the NDErs’ preexisting cultural or religious beliefs, since they represented a wide spectrum of those from various faith traditions or no faith at all. They wrote:

These transformative experiences of a unique love — a love that is total, unconditional and enormous — speak not just to what happens after we die, but to what matters while we live. These people described their encounters with death, but the message, instead, is one about the meaning of life.