Author’s Blog

A collection of Andy’s writings – reflections, sermons, poems, random thoughts over the years.

@OurCofELike – a week in the life …

Click here for a snapshot of my life in
@ChurchofEngland
, as I’ve been guest Tweeter for
@OurCofElike
this week. I’ll keep updating this page until I finish on Sunday evening.

Filled with God’s fulness – Ephesians Pt 6 (Ephesians 3:14-21) – 20 February 2022

We’re about halfway through our series in Ephesians and we come to perhaps the most incredible prayer in the New Testament.  One that we could not go far wrong in praying for ourselves and for each other.  Before we dive into the prayer, it’s worth exploring how this passage begins, how he introduces this prayer.  [Please get … Continue reading Filled with God’s fulness – Ephesians Pt 6 (Ephesians 3:14-21) – 20 February 2022

God’s new society – Ephesians Pt 4 (Ephesians 2:11-22) – 30 January 2022

Well, I don’t know about you, but I’ve found these beginning weeks in Ephesians quite overwhelming. I feel a bit like Aladdin when he finds himself in the cave of wonders – overwhelmed by the treasure that surrounds him.  He has to make himself focus on the one piece of treasure he has come for – … Continue reading God’s new society – Ephesians Pt 4 (Ephesians 2:11-22) – 30 January 2022

All spiritual blessings are in Christ – Ephesians Pt 1 (Ephesians 1:1-14) – 9th January 2022

Well, I have to admit that it’s funny standing up here this morning for my first Sunday morning sermon since August! Obviously, you’ll now be used to the high production qualities that we enjoyed in the Alpha series that you’ll be expecting the same thing.  Well, I’m delighted to say that I too will be jetting … Continue reading All spiritual blessings are in Christ – Ephesians Pt 1 (Ephesians 1:1-14) – 9th January 2022

A painful privilege

Last week, I led the thanksgiving service for a lovely young woman who died of cancer. She was a friend who’d asked me to take her funeral. I hoped I’d never have to, that God would heal and bring deliverance. He has, of course, in his own way, for she knew she was going home. … Continue reading A painful privilege

Transcript of Interview on UCB 2, “This is my story”

On Monday 17th January, I had the privilege of being interviewed live by Ruth O’Reilly-Smith for her “This is my story” show, which is described as a a show about sharing stories of how God’s amazing love has changed lives forever. Here’s the transcript of the interview. Ruth O’Reilly-SmithHis grandparents’ story is in a new book … Continue reading Transcript of Interview on UCB 2, “This is my story”

2020 – this was the year

2020 this was the year Of pandemic and full of fear COVID. Lockdown. Death. Infections R rates. Line graphs. Bad projections. Stay home, Save lives, and keep your space. Please Wash your hands and mask your face. No hugs or touch with friend or stranger Please, please don’t put them in danger. A sickness that … Continue reading 2020 – this was the year

Easter Sermon – The life-changing faith of Puddleglum – “I’m on Aslan’s side”

One of the delights of being a dad is reading stories.  Bedtime is one of my favourite times of the day, because it’s story time.  Sometimes we manage to sneak in a quick time for a cuddle and a read first thing in the morning if I’m awake enough.  Alicia and I are reading through … Continue reading Easter Sermon – The life-changing faith of Puddleglum – “I’m on Aslan’s side”

One Saturday

A headline in the paper read,“Religious nut and freak is dead.”The spokesman for the Pharisees Explained (while looking very pleased),“This man had caused us lots of trouble,We had to get him on the double.He claimed he was the Chosen One,Almighty God, His only Son.We Pharisees weren’t having that! – Even worse, he claimed he’d sat At God’s right … Continue reading One Saturday

Immeasurably More

This is the sermon I preached today, based on Ephesians 3:14-21 It’s holiday season and some of us will be heading to the coast. Nearly all of us have. When we stand on the shore, there’s so much more out there. And sometimes you can stand on the shore, and if you look left, all … Continue reading Immeasurably More

People of Truth and Grace

This is the text of the sermon I preached this morning, reflecting on Paul’s courage to speak the truth in Acts 13:1-12.   Life was good for Jonathan Aitken. He was a high-profile, successful politician, destined for greater glory as a future leader of the Conservatives and therefore possible Prime Minister. Then, in 1995 Jonathan … Continue reading People of Truth and Grace

Joy in heaven

  I love the verses in the Bible that talk about God’s delight in us, about partying and rejoicing in heaven when people come to him.  Jesus said, “Count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one sinner’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue.” And, in my favourite verse in … Continue reading Joy in heaven

Be strong and courageous

Just over 32 years ago, I was given the name Andrew. It means “strong, courageous, manly.” I remember being in secondary school assembly one day when the local Christian worker was talking about the meaning of names, and he mentioned the meaning of my name. There was a titter that went around those sitting near … Continue reading Be strong and courageous

All Your Children

I am made in your image – Like all your children. I am fearfully and wonderfully made – But so are all your children. A product of the master craftsman – Along with all your children. Of infinite worth – Like all your children. Unique – a once-off – Like all your children. There were … Continue reading All Your Children

The Passion Ballad

All eyes on a garden – a kneeling manCries out to his father, “Take this cup if you can.”A gasp heard in heaven – angels can’t bearWatch the scene of a broken man crying down there. The fate of the world is now left unsure,The plan for salvation could stutter and fall.It hangs on a … Continue reading The Passion Ballad

Watching and waiting

Watching and waiting My heart aches this evening. the general synod has voted against a resolution to appoint women bishops. Although the measure was passed overwhelmingly by the houses of Bishops and Clergy, it fell just 6 votes (out of 206) shor…

A dream of the church

I have a dream… I dream of a people who love God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength; Who worship with passion, serve with conviction, who hunger for revelation, who know and love God’s Word, who know they will never stop learning;lifelo…

The foolishness of the cross

This is the text of the sermon I preached this morning, based on 1 Corinthians 1:18 – “The message of the cross is foolishness to the perishing but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God.” He was young, free and single. In the prime of …

Marching on … Part 1 – A New Beginning

On Sunday 26 February an important announcement was made for me and my family, as well as a number of people we don’t yet know. It was announced that subject to the usual stuff (CRB, blah blah blah), I’ve been appointed as the Vicar of Allesley Pa…

Joseph – reluctant hero

The previous blog I took a look at Mary. Now the spotlight moves to Joseph, as depicted in Matthew 1:18-25, which is another gloriously understated passage, isn’t it? Once again someone is given the most extraordinary news – “Joseph, I’m pregnant;…

There’s something about Mary …

As we approach Christmas, I thought I’d share a few thoughts about the major characters we hear so much about …. A few questions about Mary – how did Mary know that her mysterious visitor was an angel – was it white, with wings and a halo? Why w…

Why church?

This is the text of a sermon I preached on Phillippians 2:1-3 a couple of weeks ago. It remains the most challenging (to me) sermon I’ve felt called to preach, which is why I’m sharing it here. I was preaching to myself as much as anyone else. Wha…

Love wins

In Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, Helm’s Deep is under attack from an army numbering thousands fighting for the evil Saruman. It has only one aim: the complete annihilation of its enemy, including women and children. It seems very likely that …

Some questions … A prayer.

Dear Lord, Firstly, I just want to say thank you so much for the wonderful gift of Isabelle. She’s beautiful – yet another example of your amazing creative abilities – and I feel honoured to be able to be her dad. She helps me to believe the truth…

Snowflakes Stopping Traffic

Originally appeared as Yoursfaithfully column in Sentinel (Stoke-on-Trent local newspaper) on 23 March 2011 War and civil unrest. Airstrikes. Earthquake and Tsunami. Nuclear threat. Recession. Record unemployment. The news headlines make depressin…

Loving the last and the least

Gypsies really are the last and the least here in Romania. At the bottom of the pile when it comes to hygiene, housing, healthcare, education, employment – everything. Doctors need to take a bribe before they will consider giving anaesthetic to a …

God’s got your back

Sometimes following Jesus is a struggle. The Bible, prayer, and church all can feel a drag. It feels like you’re wading through treacle. If you’re feeling like this now, then I may have some encouragement for all of us. This morning I was reading …

No room

1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2(This took place before Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from th…

Only by Grace

Most of the time, I’m a hopeless Christian – especially when you consider that the literal meaning of Christian is “little Christ”. Most of the time I bear very little to Jesus, who … Who, being in very nature God,did not consider equality with Go…

“Any man’s death diminishes me”

On Sunday evening millions of people were gathered in pubs, clubs, bars and restaurants across the world to watch the World Cup final. Many in Africa wanted to celebrate the first World Cup held on African soil. Kampala was no different; that is, …

Flying by the seat of my pants

Since I began full-time church work as a curate in the Church of England last year, I have become increasingly convinced of the need for the church to engage with the local community, to be salt and light, to allow the light of Jesus to shine out …

Struggling to Serve

In less than a month, I will be ordained as priest in the Church of England. It will be my second ordination, as I was ordained deacon nearly a year ago. But what does that actually mean? What does it mean to be a deacon? In many people’s eyes, th…

About Me

Hi, I’m Andy, I’m a husband, vicar, follower of Jesus, full-time vicar and newly (self-) published author of “Loving the Enemy – building bridges in a time of war”. Here I share reflections, sermons, and occasional random thoughts.

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