Fighting Depression @ 

Depression can be debilitating and challenging to say the least. But in His Grace and with His strength you and I can tackle it prayerfully.

Take a look at my guest article courtesy of Sarah Koontz at Living By Design Ministries.

Many thanks must be accorded for the encouragement, support and editing skills of this great woman of God.

Get the article at the link here –

Blessings – Andrew

© Andrew Jewell 2018

Grace and the Velveteen Rabbit 

What can I say about Grace and the Velveteen Rabbit? To be honest I really can’t say it any better than Margery Williams in ‘The Velveteen Rabbit‘ itself. A book that has delighted children and adults alike for almost a century.

(image courtesy positive vibes)





‘Once you are real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand’ (_..)


I love this line, because in Grace this is how God views us. Because in being real to ourselves in Christ we are returning to God as one of His children. Exactly as He created you to be.

He sees not just one of his well loved children returning to Him like a favorite source of comfort. No, He sees also His beloved Son.

When we see our children we, as parents rush to embrace them and our heavenly Father is no different. Just as we are compelled to hold our Children so to He is compelled by love to hold His own Son and His children.

We may be shabby around the edges, feel like we’re falling apart but that’s when God loves us the most and we show it. He’s squeezed us so hard to His heart in those hard times that we look loved.

It is in that time of pressure comfort that we become real. Real because we are exactly where, who and who’s we are and were always supposed to be.

Beheld in Yahweh’s embrace.

© Andrew Jewell


© Andrew Jewell 

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© Andrew Jewell 2018 

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Go and I will go with you

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Oh Holy Night 

Wow! Ok so this was a really difficult choice. There are so many awesome versions of Oh Holy Night out there it is sooo difficult to choose.

In the end, inspite of how much I love the crescendos and raw power that can accompany this song I’ve gone a different way. I’ve opted for something a little gentler.

As you usher in Christmas day, this clip in particular reminds us of the significance of what a young couple endured for us in carrying forth the Messianic legacy.  Moreover it is an illustration of the simple love that God brought forth and those things we hold dear at Christmas.

Oh Holy Night is about one Holy night when God Himself in His Son chose to be with His people knowing full well what was to come.

Why might we ask? Simply because He loved, loves and wants to be with His Children.

Have a restful and safe Christmas, Blessed in the knowledge of Who’s you are and will always be.

Blessings – Andrew

Watch “O Holy Night – AMAZING version!!” on YouTube

© Andrew Jewell 2017 

It’s not Christmas without the little drummer boy..

It’s not Christmas without the little drummer boy. Or at least in my opinion.

Why? Because the little drummer boy represents to me just who Christ came for. The smallest, the meekest and the grateful. The Child and the adult with childlike faith, prepared to give the only thing they had. In this case a rhythm that has resounded throughout the ages. A heartbeat, a pulse of simple adoration for our great King.

It’s a great reminder that it’s your heart that He wants. Nothing more, nothing less.

When you listen, imagine your pulse in time with His. The little drummer boys knell the sound of Him, the coming Christ tapping at the door of our hearts.

Blessings -Andrew 

Watch “Little Drummer Boy – NTNU version” on YouTube

© Andrew Jewell 2017 

Christmas Hallelujah

OK so generally I’m not really one for re-lyricising (if that’s even a word) a song, particularly one that stands well on its own.
However I can’t escape the value in directly applying Leonard Cohen’s classic to Christmas.

הַלְּלוּיָהּ (Hallelujah) in common usage as we know first appears in the Bible. It carries with it the meaning of ‘praise Yah’. Yahweh (Yhwh), the name for God. But more than that it denotes a joyous praise, a reckless almost foolish praise in its selfless abandonment to rejoice in Him.

What other time throughout the year do we so liberally abandon our inhibitions to sing and join together? What other time of year do strangers more frequently go out of their way to help others? And what other time of year other than the resurrection we embrace at Easter are we son drawn to God’s great work on Earth?

Rejoice! For He is Here!

Watch “Christmas Hallelujah” on YouTube

© Andrew Jewell


Worship with – ‘Les Anges dans nos campagnes’

The lyrics of ‘Angels We Have Heard on High’ were inspired by a French carol known as Les Anges dans nos campagnes (literally, “The Angels in our countryside”) 

At no other time through the year do Angels feature so prominently in our consciousness than at Christmas. I love the imagery of heavenly heralds cheering in with great anticipation, celebration and joy the birth of our Christ!

This is a chilled version From YouTube.

Watch “The Best Christmas Song I’ve Ever Heard. It Will Give You Chills.” on YouTube

© Andrew Jewell 

Friday Night Worship -Carol of the Bells with a twist

In the Christmas spirit here is an amazing rendition of Carol of the Bells (with a twist) by Pentatonix.

‘Carol of the Bells’ was put together by Ukrainian composer Mykola Leontovych in 1914  with lyrics by Peter J. Wilhousky based upon the folk chant “Shchedryk“.

Commissioned by Oleksander Koshyts,  Leontovych set out to create the song based on traditional Ukrainian folk chants, and the resulting new work for choir. “Shchedryk” was based on just four notes Leontovych found in an anthology.

The original Ukrainian title translates to “the generous one” or is perhaps derived from the Ukrainian word for bountiful (shchedryj), and tells a tale of a swallow flying into a household to proclaim the bountiful year that the family will have.

What a beautiful image to adopt into and highlight the coming of the Messiah in the Lord’s bountiful Grace.

Blessings – Andrew 

Watch “[Official Video] Carol of the Bells – Pentatonix” on YouTube

© Andrew Jewell

Video courtesy YouTube.

Background information Wikipedia

Christmas Birth Pangs and Silent Grace

by Andrew Jewell

Much of what we hear see and understand about Christmas, how we experience it and revere it comes from our exposure in early childhood. Our familiar images and sentiment girded with soft moon and candlelight and the stillness of the quiet evening air.

A babe in a manger born into a stable surrounded by farm animals to ostracised parents shunned from the door of the inn. We have visions of starry nights, sweet Angelic song and  imperturbable homage from strangers.

It is an enduring image of peace and serenity that has lasted throughout the ages, a testimony for God’s love and His desire to save and dwell among us.

But on reflection, today I’d like to pose another idea. An idea that not so much talks about the stillness of God’s peace that arrived with the birth of Christ, that silent Grace. No, rather too the lead up to it, those first Christmas birth pangs that sounded over and shook the Earth and Creation with the coming Messiah.

I wonder if it sounded or felt something like this;

Psalm 29:1-9

Ascribe to the Lord, you heavenly beings, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.The voice of the Lord is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the Lord thunders over the mighty waters.The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is majestic.The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars; the Lord breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon.He makes Lebanon leap like a calf, Sirion like a young wild ox.The voice of the Lord strikes with flashes of lightning.The voice of the Lord shakes the desert; the Lord shakes the Desert of Kadesh.The voice of the Lord twists the oaks and strips the forests bare. And in his temple all cry, “Glory!” – Psalm 29:1-9 

You see for me it isn’t just about stillness (and it certainly is about that too), but also about the movement. The Revelation and the shaking of a fallen world to receive the Son of God in the Flesh. The declaration from the animals of the Earth –‘The King is Here, Rejoice!’, the bowing  of the palm tree to the authority of Grace in the Flesh and the deafening silence that I imagine reigned in Heaven- much like the aftermath of a huge party. The whisper of the Angels murmur –‘it is done!’.

Just as we read about the voice of the Lord shaking the desert and young calves leaping, so too surely the announcement of such arrival. The excitement and fervour in the Father’s voice would indeed thunder in His Holiness and break the great cedars of Lebanon.

Christmas isn’t just about the peace He bought with Him but what that coming mean’t to an Earth and it’s peoples crying out to be returned to Him.

It’s about the Father’s joy manifest for us on Earth. About the commencement of a returning of His Kingdom. A brilliant, effervescent delight called from the hilltops in His name with great joy shouting;

‘Rejoice, for He has come!’

Blessings – Andrew 

© Andrew Jewell 

The First Christ’s Day Carol

I am Perplexed by Carolling


I am perplexed by Carolling. I  find it interesting how Christmas carols have developed and adapted over the years. From deeply sacred songs sung in many traditions and languages  Reformed, Calvinist, Anglican, Lutheran Germanic, Celtic, English and so on through to heavily  secularised appreciations for the season in general, tales of rouge-draped chubby men of great whisker and toiling sprites.

All good fun in spreading good cheer, but should that be our only focus?

Particularly evident is this to me at  larger commercialised Christmas events.  While seeking to engage people in a number of different levels of faith, or indeed no faith at all often times they become far more about the performance, inter-city competition and community expectation rather than Christ’s message.

Many of these events it would seem are experiential in nature, but with a focus on the emotional experience, a ‘feel good vibe’ rather than a Spiritual one. While these things are important in both the social fabric of a society and in generating good will it poses within me the question – Are we cultivating our own spirit of Christmas or indeed the Holy Spirit of Christmas that carries with it all that God has done and chooses to do with those with whom He would dwell?

Strange, that as we focus on happiness and love and being joyful but simultaneously as a culture forgetting about why we can and indeed should should be joyful, rather than simply that we are encouraged or able to be.

It is nice, if not psychologically beneficial as a community to come together and focus and sing about love and unity, but do we sing mindfully of the source of that love, or simply because it is a feel good experience?

The First Carol


Within this framework I thought –  What of the first Christ’s Day Carol? The first Christmas song that echoed through the heart of the earth with the sound of heavenly chorus. Not that which is sung but rather that which is experienced. Not simply the Nativity,  but the heaving of God and all he has created in the birth pangs of his coming Son.

Often during a Christmas eve service I feel like I am very close to that first Carol. There is a heaviness in the advent of Christ’s birth that seems to permeate the air. An anticipation throughout the day and indeed in the days before, an expectation within Creation that something so totally Creation-changing is about to flow outward from the Father into the world.

That is the Christmas Carol that I choose to experience.

As in Faith and Christianity, free will before God plays a massive part in how we experience Him and His birth. We have the power to choose what and how we want to focus on in celebrating the birth of a King this Christmas.

Moreover, Christ’s birth is not just a special day, but the advent of the personification of Grace- Christ with us. It is not just the birth of a Saviour but an illustration of the Father’s love and deep longing to dwell with His people. That first Carol was about not just Him but about You and Him. It was not just about a child born into poverty and persecution but the story of a God that chose to go through poverty and persecution with YOU, for YOU and because of YOU.

It is because of that deep, uncompromising love that we have Christmas. It is because of that first Carol that we can plug in and share in the emotion of that deep love of the Father.

In this lead up to Christmas why not seek not just to enjoy these times, but rather experience the gift of that first Christ-day carol.

avatar_15087514196321803204077.jpg©Andrew Jewell 2017




What Happens When You Put God First?

What happens when we put God First?

When we put God first all His plans for us spring into action.

When we put God first His designs not only for you but for others are realised.

When we put God first we are choosing to let God take control and lead on a path that He set down, long before we even thought of it.

God wants YOU to flourish in His works. To realise the plans He has made for you, beyond anything you can imagine. Only YOU can do what He has set apart for you, His most precious child through His everlasting Grace.

I urge you, if you want to flourish, be bountiful in all He has given and is waiting to give you – put God first

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord , “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.” – Jeremiah 29:11-14 

When God cries out ‘I love you’... Will you choose to love Him back?

Watch “Put God First – Denzel Washington Motivational & Inspiring Commencement Speech” on YouTube

Video courtesy YouTube 

© Andrew Jewell 2017 – 

True Praise

Give praise to the LORD, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done.

Praise isn’t just an outward action, but an expression of the soul. HOW we praise takes many forms and is very personal to who we are. Sometimes I think we get lost in the ‘this is how we should do it’ thing.

We are oft times told that to truly praise God you must do it in a certain way, sometimes even at a certain time.

The Father made each of us unique so do what He has put within you to praise and bring Glory to His name.

If you run, run for Him in celebration, run with Him in your heart and run as if He is by your side.

If you paint, paint with the colours of the love for your Father, with exuberant passion of you love for Him and in fevered reverence to your gift.

If you so let every stitch count, a testament to His weaving in your life with vibrance and celebration!

And if you sing, call out from deep down beneath your diaphragm with gusto and power as if you are to burst with the Glory of His name.

Sing to God, sing in praise of his name, extol him who rides on the clouds; rejoice before him—his name is the Lord .A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land. – Psalm 68:4-6

Blessings – Andrew

© Andrew Jewell 2017 

Lessons From God’s Garden

By Andrew Jewell

I’m not a Gardener…

I’m not a gardener by any means. I may have the odd project or collection of plants that I dote on and care for but I wouldn’t really regard myself as having a green thumb. Generally for something to grow in my garden it historically needed to thrive on neglect. Luckily many plants do.

The way I see it, and have generally always seen it is that it is God’s garden. I may tend it occasionally, plant a few hings on a whim or trim something into shape, but largely it is His creation and He knows far better than me what can make it sing.


However, that is not to say that there are not many things that being in the garden on those rare occasions has taught me about my Father. About a loving God that takes care of an in His Creation, including me.


I imagine that one of the things most avid gardeners will tell you is that things take time to grow and come together. Whether that be for a harvest, an aesthetic design or simply to see a flowerbed flourish.

One of the things that I have also learn’t about God is that He is a patient God.  He knows in his wisdom that change and growth take time. Certainly I know that daily He is (luckily) patient  with me. But being in the Garden, amongst all things that ultimately He has control over has also taught me patience.


It shows me that change and growth takes times, in myself, in the flora and fauna, and in others. When we are patient in that great things happen. Growth springs forth when we least expect it, we get the satisfaction of knowing that things will eventually come to fruition. We develop an awareness and a sense of comfort that He is in control.


Personally I find gardens to be quite humbling. They tend to make me aware on a deep level that regardless of my toil, ultimately whether something lives or dies is part of God’s design. There is a humility to be found in being out of control. In ultimately having to submit ourselves to the Father’s will.

Likewise however there is also a humbleness to be found in holding this small seemingly helpless thing in your hands and helping it to succeed and grow. A Sense that God, as part of the blessing of stewardship (Gen 1:28) has put me in charge of something that is important to Him in His majesty.


‘Gardens aren’t just plants, they are collections of living things all created to bring glory to God in their own right. It is the flower that blooms because it basks in the glory of His sun and the birds that sing with joy over His realm.’

Stewardship over the Earth is something that we may talk about in regard to this Earth as a whole or perhaps our own area or home town, but not often when speaking about something as simple as our gardens at home. That is not to say that everything needs to be weeded, cut and tended within an inch of its life, no rather in contrast it is about helping God to tend His garden. Gardens aren’t just plants, they are insect-1122495_640collections of living things all created to bring glory to God in their own right. It is the flower that blooms because it basks in the glory of His sun and the birds that sing with joy over His realm. It is about the bees that pollinate and the bugs and crawlers that feed others and help keep the collective balance. An ecosystem of glory that always points to the Father. My role is to keep that going. An acknowledgement of all that He has provided and continues to provide. To allow this garden to point always to the Father as I should point always to the Father and acknowledge what He has created as His own.


plant-2679688_640Our God is a God of abundance and in no other place is that more evident than in a garden. I imagine if we were to count every type of plant, bug, bird and creature occupying the average garden we would be there for a very long time.

It’s easy to forget when we are seeking to be humble that God loves excess. When God created something as simple as a butterfly he didn’t create just one, but thousands of derivatives of the same one, and then went on to make mark #2, #3 and so on. All different, all with purpose, all with the fingerprint of God. Rejoice in what He has made abundant.



Finally Garden’s are an allegory for Love. They are an expression of how much God loves and cares for us and His Creation. They thrive on the loving attention we may give to it, and inter-thrive with one another as they pollinate, fertilise, cross-pollinate, feed the soil, die and fertilise each other again. Not by chance, but by design. Moreover they are designed to be beautiful, just as God’s love for us is beautiful.

‘I am overwhelmed with joy in the Lord my God!
    For he has dressed me with the clothing of salvation
    and draped me in a robe of righteousness.
I am like a bridegroom dressed for his wedding
    or a bride with her jewels.’ (Isa 61:10)

Next time you’re in the garden think about how God’s design and love is present all around you. Listen, smell, hear and taste the beauty that He has given you. That, just as the sacrifice of his Son is His expression of love to you who He chose, predestined and tends so that you may flourish.

What other lessons will you learn from God’ garden?

avatar_1508751419632223010809.jpg© Andrew Jewell 2017




Brotherly Unity

by Andrew Jewell

Psalm 133:1 Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Excellency of Brotherly Unity.
A Song of [a]Ascents. Of David.

133 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brothers to dwell together in unity!

For in Unity there is strength and in His strength there is unity. It doesn’t matter where we may differ with one another in our path to the Father, but more importantly where we unite. Each individual church, denomination and expression is strong in its own way, but in unity we can be  heart of God on earth.

Love, express, shine.

 So I, the prisoner for the Lord, appeal to you to live a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called [that is, to live a life that exhibits godly character, moral courage, personal integrity, and mature behavior—a life that expresses gratitude to God for your salvation], with all humility [forsaking self-righteousness], and gentleness [maintaining self-control], with patience, bearing with one another [a]in [unselfish] love. Make every effort to keep the oneness of the Spirit in the bond of peace [each individual working together to make the whole successful]. There is one body [of believers] and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when called [to salvation]— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of us all who is [sovereign] over all and [working] through all and [living] in all. (Eph 4:1-6)

avatar_1508751419632223010809.jpg© Andrew Jewell-


Sunday Sanctuary – Be kind to one another 

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor [perpetual animosity, resentment, strife, fault-finding] and slander be put away from you, along with every kind of malice [all spitefulness, verbal abuse, malevolence].Be kind and helpful to one another, tender-hearted [compassionate, understanding], forgiving one another [readily and freely], just as God in Christ also forgave you. – Ephesians 4:31-32


It seems like common sense really, after all we are God’s people created for love. You would think that this verse was something that we are especially good at. Often times we are, fulfilling our calling to be Jesus in the flesh.

But sadly we don’t always deliver on our intentions as well as we would like to.

One of the things I hear that wrenches at my heart the most is when good, we’ll meaning people have been hurt by individuals in the Church and sometimes the Church as a body simply because the prosecutor has seemingly forgotten the above passage.

Often we can be in danger of focusing on doing the right thing and in doing so forget to do the right thing.

Tweet: Often we can be in danger of focusing on doing the right thing and in doing so forget to do the right thing. 
Churches are full of broken people, and I am one of them. Often we can be in danger of focusing on doing the right thing and in doing so forget to do the right thing.

Jesus taught us to to love first. Jesus didn’t tell us to love someone who sees things our way, agrees with us or fits a mould. No rather He simply said love one another as I have loved you.’

That’s is a pretty tall bar. After all Christ crucified Himself to demonstrate His love.

Next time, before we open our mouth to condemn or criticise instead of offering words of kindness, maybe we should ask ourselves first;

‘Am I willing to die for them as Christ died for me?’

wp-image-276537820© 2017 Andrew Jewell –





Watch “[Aramaic] Psalm 53 in Georgia (for pope Francis) – REMASTERED” on YouTube

This piece leaves me wonderfully chilled. A beautiful rendition done in a language to which Jesus would have been very familiar. This piece illustrates the power and unity of our love in Christ and our shared Faith regardless of language, liturgy or denominational expression of worship. I hope you enjoy this offering for Friday night worship.
Blessings – Andrew 

Thurspiration- Redeeming Grace Remastered

Grace is something that we tend to talk about a lot, and with good reason. Without it our salvation in Christ would cease to exist. It is the centre-pin of our breath, for without which we would simply be empty vessels doomed in our own Sin to be separated from the Father.


‘A new Grace edition added and polished and refined on top of our old experience.’ – Andrew Jewell on ‘Remastered Grace’

Why Grace remastered? Put simply because remastered implies a reworking. A new Grace edition added and polished and refined on top of our old experience.

In my walk with God my experience of Grace is being remastered every day. Because I make mistakes every day, I  unknowingly in my brokenness find ways to separate myself from Him everyday. And every day I rely on Him to bring me home.

Such is my experience of a remastered Grace.

Was there anything wrong with the old one? Certainly not, but with each stumble I need a new reminder, a new lighthouse to show me the way out of the darkness.

Such is the nature of Grace, a beacon that burns brighter the darker the night may seem.

wp-image-276537820© Andrew Jewell –



The Excellence of Love

1 Corinthians 13:1 Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Excellence of Love :13:1 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not [a]love [for others growing out of God’s love for me], then I have become only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal [just an annoying distraction]. 

Funny how love is the most important driver for many of us, be it love for others ourselves or more worldly ideals such as money and power.

What this scripture shows us is how important Godly love, by His design and example in the Cross is to our being and our humanity. I love the AB version that talks about us being just an ‘annoying distraction’ without love. It emphasises the futility of trying to do things out of our own motivation rather than His way.

We were created for love and to be loved… When was the last time you focused purely on how you show God’s love to others and soaked in the love of God for yourself ?

I guess in one sense we only need to ask ourselves one question.. Am I modelling distraction or direction?




© Andrew Jewell

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#Monday Ministry – Father of Faithfulness


There are many times when we feel we are walking alone. That it is simply us, spinning out of control on this infinite rock hurtling through space.

It is also in these times that we call out for more. For a someone or something that has more power than us to turn things around, to pick us up when we have fallen or simply say ‘It will all be OK’.

It is often in these dark shadows of the soul  that we reach out to find meaning, to explore if there is more, if there is a God and I’m not the only thing that decides if I live or die or triumph or fail.

As a Christian I have that comfort. A Faith that allows me to not simply gaze in awe or worship an unseen entity, but a Faith that means everyday He is walking by my side.

Like a gentle Father, the first Father in fact He leans down and softly says ‘I Love you!’ and that there is nothing that we cannot tackle together. For He is my provider and protector, my beacon of where to turn or how to handle life’s latest speed hump. He is Eternal, my internal, my external. My guiding light and deliverer unto Himself where I will prosper, receive love and learn how to love.

Such is the nature of my Heavenly Father, my Father of Faithfulness.

wp-image-276537820© Andrew Jewell

Church Source

Creativity Meets Prayer – Exploring Contemplative Practice

By Andrew Jewell

I wanted to talk just briefly about contemplative prayer practice and using visualisation to press deeper into our time alone with God. From a cognitive perspective visualisation is an extremely powerful tool and helps us to focus, refocus, redirect and challenge our perceptions. In prayer this is also true but carries with it a deep engagement with our Creator.

When things get dry


Prayer and maintaining a regular devotional practice can be challenging. Personally speaking prayer has always been second nature to me but not everyone is that lucky. One of the things about prayer practice is that sometimes it can get a bit dry, we find it hard to press in or find ourselves praying about the same things over and over. It’s here that I find Christian meditation and contemplative practice is helpful.

It is here that creativity meets prayer and we explore contemplative practice.

 Click to Tweet:

‘When we use visualisation to contemplate the nature and deeper things of God we are drawn into a new experience of God.’ – Andrew Jewell

Imagination is a wonderful thing

Call it Spirit inspired or simply just our mind working with concepts or images that we are familiar with, visualisation has huge part to play when pressing into God. We are lucky in that we have a bible full of symbols and stories that make it easier to find a place to start. Unlike Lectio Divina , an important discipline in itself where we are immersed in an understanding of the written form  when we use visualisation to contemplate the nature and deeper things of God we are drawn into a new experience of God.

Where to start

Where we start is a very personal thing. Most of us likely have a familiar image that we find comforting or powerful that is jumping off point. It may be an image in your mind of the events of the transfiguration, of the Cross, of Jesus himself in any number of depictions. It may also be a vision of heaven, the heavenly seat or throne, the glory of a clouded sky or even a calming brook, its all up to you and God to decide together.

Sometimes we can’t focus or bring a particular image to mind so start with a scripture to inspire or simply pray and ask for God to lead you to a place where you can be nearer to Him. For me that is usually the olive tree. A place where I know I can often speak, walk or simply be around Jesus and allow Him to speak into my heart regarding my questions or concerns. It is also a place I go for healing when I need prayer for myself or others. For you it may be different, its about the journey not the destination.

Finer points


I know many people struggle with the concept of meditation and being still, some even to the point of anxiety as it can be unfamiliar. Some worry that if they are too deep in meditation ‘what will happen?’ to their physical body if it comes into danger or even their Spirit if they go into unknown territory.

Rest assured that if you are in prayer Spiritually you will be safe  and are held by His Spirit. Fear of physical issues also tends to be tied to the lack of control e.g. my eyes are closed or ‘I could be embarrassed if someone walks in’ rather than actual physical threat. However, if you are feeling unsafe move to a time and place where you are safe and won’t be disturbed.

The other concern that sometimes raises its head is our concept of meditation, that it is somehow tied up with a dark spiritual practice from another belief. Most often this is a cultural thing and more prevalent in the Western world as many other regions have meditation as central to their religious practice. After all there are many Scriptural references to meditating in and on God;

Psalm 119:27 New Living Translation (NLT)

27 Help me understand the meaning of your commandments,
    and I will meditate on your wonderful deeds.

Set the Scene

Trying to meditate and pray in a deep, unobstructed manner needs the right atmosphere and situation, including being alone. Even Jesus needed to withdraw to pray. So it helps to ensure that you are unlikely to be disturbed as discussed above. Secondly it it is good to set the scene, that is to be in the environment that you find most conducive to contemplative practice. For Jesus it was often the wilderness, but for you it may be your bedroom, a beach, an empty church or any other place that has special Spiritual meaning to you.

Ensure your environment is also set-up in such a way as to enable easy meditation and relaxation. That may mean comfortable seating, some quiet music, being close to running water or the sea, where you can hear birdsong or even something as simple as relative darkness and a candle. If you find you are struggling or feel it may help you can find meditation/ Sacred spaces here on the website.

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‘We need to be still in order to be still.’
– Andrew Jewell
 As in Meditation breathing is important to put you in the best frame of mind and to ensure you are relaxed for prayer. It is very difficult to press into our Faith when our mind is going 500 miles an hour down a dusty road and no roof. No, we need to be still in order to be still.
Breathing to move into a contemplative state doesn’t have to be to any magic formula, just a simple focus on breath, feeling it move in and out gently is enough. This is also helpful in a focusing sense. It is a simple, instinctive action that we can focus on when our mind tries to drift back to the pressures of the day. Stay with your breathe and focus on your sacred picture.


Finally be open and prepared for God to take you where and how He chooses with the images He gives you. It is an experience that is not only deeply fulfilling but frees us to explore parts of ourselves and God that we may never have contemplated before.
May He bless you in your prayer time or perhaps you may like to share your experience in the comments below, I’d love to hear about your experiences.
                      – Andrew
 © Copyright Andrew Jewell –          bg-blogger-badge-500x500-e1387301563797

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#Monday Ministry- Rise Like the Sun!


By Andrew Jewell

31 Lord, may all your enemies die like Sisera! 

But may those who love you rise like the sun in all its power!”

Then there was peace in the land for forty years.

Judges 5:31 (NLT)

It Can be Hard to Rise

Scripture is full of references like the above. References to achieving victory,  conquering in the heights of His purpose and defeating that which comes against us. Much of this calls to us from a rich tradition of authors all pointing to the strength and enduring power of God throughout the Bible and the plans He has for His people to live with a sense of mastery. Indeed even Wedgetail’s catch-cry scripture (Isa40:31) eludes to just that. But do we claim it and own it as we travel throughout our week?

Funnily enough it’s easy to feel the victory of the love of Christ when we are deep in worship, when we are blessed by a loving family around us, had a fulfilling devotion or prayer session or things are generally just going well.  Not so easy when things aren’t going so well or we are doing it a bit tough. .. Sometimes it’s simply hard to rise.

If we look at the above verse we can draw a number of conclusions that can help us not only better understand scripture, but how such a simple phrase can indeed help us to ‘rise like the Sun’ when we are experiencing a flat spot. Below we will see three things; A jealous protective God who looks after His people; The victory to be found in our love of God and; Finally we see the peace that follows from having Faith in our God.

Lord, may all your enemies die like Sisera!”

Phrases like this one often make me uncomfortable, purely because in modern society we have become adverse to the brutality, and the  blunt portrayal of death often seen in ancient middle east writings. It’s one thing to see it on TV portrayed in fiction, another entirely if we see images from war or oppression on the news. The sentence above really is closer to the latter, it is a recounting of something that happened, and happened because God had His hand upon it.  Sisera as we read in Judges was a Canaanite commander who died (rather graphically) by having a tent peg driven through his temple with a mallet, nailing his head to the ground. Such is the fate  of enemies of the Lord.

What this passage portrays to me is a jealous, protective God that will do what it takes to look after His own. Just as He will do what it takes to look after you. That doesn’t necessarily mean that someone is about to be struck down in His wrath, but it does illustrate that situations are and that perpetrators of such situations will inevitably face the consequence of their actions when such oppression is torn down.

“But may those who love you rise like the sun in all its power!”

A quick google tells me that the Sun deposits approximately 1,368 W/m2 (watts per square meter) upon our little water-faced planet with a heat composition of 5,505 °C. To my way of thinking that’s a lot of power. And if we are likened to such a fireball, that’s a pretty big blessing to express.

The Sun to the culture of the time was often recognised as a deity, it gave life, light and warmth and indeed the Sabbath was adopted from the Gentile Christian perspective to replace the Roman day of the Sun. So it’s imagery both to our understanding now and the people then is one not only of great power and significance but reverence.

Moreover, our understanding of the Sun has a timeless, eternal quality much like our legacy in Christ. The Sun always rises and always sets and the Sun will continue to rise and set on our everyday problems as in the Scripture below.

History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new. (Ecc 1:9)

“Then there was peace in the land for forty years”

The last part is important because after the battle, after the struggle and the pain there is a promise of peace. For the Israelite’s under Sisera it was after twenty years of struggle, but the blessing of peace afforded in God’s Grace lasted forty. The last past of the passage shows us that not only will peace come with an overwhelming victory over oppression, but that the blessing will have twice the  significance, twice the power of the positive to that of the negative situation.

The Takeaway

So what does this all tell us? How is relevant to where I am and what I am facing today?

It tells us that when we struggle, He knows of the struggle. It tells us that when we are oppressed by person or situation God has a plan for deliverance. It tells us that when we suffer, the Father loves to bless way over and above the damage it caused. And finally it tells us that God loves to see His people rise with all the power of the Sun and live in peace.

Blessings- Andrew



© Andrew Jewell- Wedgetail Ministries



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#Monday Ministry – He Chose YOU!

wp-image-1297269836 He Chose You

Psalm 139:15 New Living Translation (NLT)

15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
    as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.

Often its easy to forget just how special we are to the Father. We can become blasé and figure that we are just another part of God’s world, rather than someone uniquely special to Him.

The above passage reminds me of expectant parents – you have this thing, magically formed inside your partner and already you have love for them. Right from the moment of conception you do all you can to nurture this child, for it be successful and happy when he or she arrives.

You invest in them, and the idea of them. Seemingly thousands of hours of planning and time and money to ensure the best outcome. You love them, know them, sense who they might become and feel uniquely connected.

Such is the Father with each of us. Each one special in their own way, just as He planned, each one growing and nurtured in their own way… Just as He planned.

Jeremiah 1:5 New Living Translation (NLT)

“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb.
    Before you were born I set you apart
    and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.”

A Personal God

In these passages we don’t see a cold Creator or a God unconcerned with His people. What we see is the picture of a very personal, invested, loving God obsessed with the welfare of His Children.

The spirit of these passages are a reminder.. that He knew and chose YOU! Not the neighbour next door or the lady down the street, not the Televangelist with the huge viewer ratings and not the last winner of an Academy award. No, He chose you to be loved by Him as His special Child of God.

Our very identity rests not only in who we are but more importantly Who’s we are. For we are not our own, but bought with a great price through the redeeming love and sacrifice of Christ.

A sacrifice made in God Himself, for YOU. You with the wonky hair and the funny voice, you that criticises the way you look in the mirror each morning and you that has cried out to your Father time and time again to be loved.

He loves YOU. Because of who you are, who you always were and who you are called to be.

Invest in the love that He has invested in you. You were chosen, formed and moulded to be just who you are in God today. Draw near to the Father in Jesus Christ and invest, revel and rejoice in the Love and Purpose that He has for you…

Jeremiah 29:11 New Living Translation (NLT)

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.

Blessings ~ Andrewbg-blogger-badge-500x500-e1387301563797


© Andrew Jewell- Wedgetail Ministries





How to Overcome Spiritual Adversity & Get Back on Track!

Spiritual adversity is something that we all face daily. We may think that it only comes to the devout, to those managing a flock or the ‘ultra-holy’- whatever that is..But in reality it is something that we all face more often than we would care to imagine.

Following on from the last episode in this Spiritual warfare series, this offering is about not only normalising that we come under attack daily and often, but moreover those things we need take into consideration when we know we need to move forward but also feel up against it. This article is about putting a face to the name and practical steps we can use when considering how to overcome Spiritual adversity and get back on track.

Identifying what’s standing in our way

In the first instance we need to think about what it is that is causing us to feel blocked. Often in life as troubles come strolling along we are so bent up in trying to make a decision that we have trouble identifying just why we can’t. Not only that, but what’s on the other side of said issue often becomes obscured from our sight.


There’s an old Zen saying that seems contrary to the Christian paradigm of a faith that can move mountains (Matt 17:20) , it states –move yourself the mountain doesn’t need to move. I always regarded it as a sharp contrast that superseded the need for faith, however closer reflection tells us that perhaps its simply a matter of perspective. That is, often I think it would be really handy to be able to see around life’s corners but if instead we see things in what I call God-spective we are seeing all the possibilities from above. Those things that were in our way, blocking our view of the path forward suddenly don’t matter any more because we see the other paths around it.

We may well muse that such perspective sounds good in theory but we are not God so how can we? Luckily for us we have unfettered access to God through the Son and therefore God’s perspective on things.

often the best way to see the way forward is on our knees.

Put simply often the best way to see the way forward is on our knees. Through prayer not only do we have the ability to tackle Spiritual adversity directly but we can also see what it is and what it is not. One of the reasons we have the Holy Spirit is to help us discern the human from the Divine, good from evil and the right path from the wrong one.

Praying for Clarification

Once we have established perspective from a God -driven point of view, then we need to work out which is the way forward. We need to know which path to take whether around, over, through, by removal or otherwise. It is easy to forget that sometimes things are in our way for a very good reason. When we question our path it is not necessarily due to a lack of faith or understanding, sometimes it is necessary to steer us from the wrong path. Prayers of supplication, clarification and confirmation are then very important. The bigger question is often if we recognise the answer when we receive it, even more so if we don’t particularly like the answer we receive or it comes in an unexpected manner. Often its hard to recognise that God is working all things together for good.  (Rom 8:28)

Confirmation doesn’t stop with Prayer

I don’t know about anyone else but personally when I’m feeling snowed under hearing God’s voice can be difficult above the din. This is one of the reasons I believe Paul encourages us to test everything (1Thess 5:21) against what we know to be of God. It’s very easy to get swept up in the ideas of others and ourselves and mistake it for what we feel God is leading us to do. Test it against Scripture as a matter of course, because it if it doesn’t line up Scripturally then we need to perhaps think and pray again.

The Bible won’t tell us every single specific scenario and what to do, but it does give us God’s base-line of how to act, listen, learn, love and be in relationship with the Father and one-another. He made us of intelligent design to make our own choices, we need only look to Him as to how to best follow His example. Even Jesus could only do what He first saw the Father doing;

John 5:19 New Living Translation (NLT)

19 So Jesus explained, “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.

However, when we are moving the right direction God often doesn’t seem to stop there. Knowing full well the doubting disciples we are God will bring people and events across our path that help define our destination. The most obvious example is a word of knowledge from another that we trust in our Faith. Someone whom God has revealed what we may need to hear to continue along the correct path. Sometimes it is a simple word of encouragement and other times it may be more specific, but it is what we need right there and then.

Should we accept what they have to say blindly? Certainly not, I would encourage you to test it prayerfully, with common sense (after all God gave us a brain for a reason) and against Scripture also. But on the flip side be wary of dismissing something unexpected out of hand.

Something also worthy of remembering is that confirmations can often be physical or material as well, after all the Father has promised to supply all our needs (Phil 4:19) . Sometimes those needs need to be met first to enable the bigger things He wants us to accomplish. Look for and expect the provision of God’s Grace and we are less likely to overlook His blessings when we encounter them.

More on Involving Others

With Spiritual adversity can come a lot of confusion on many different levels. Sometimes what we are trying to work out within ourselves we simply cannot do alone. Don’t be afraid to seek counsel from others such as Ministers, Leaders, Pastors, Counsellors and Teachers etc if you are feeling stuck. Each of us have our part to play in God’s Kingdom, and their part to play may well be helping you. Often it is the advice of others that helps us get back on track.

16 Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. (Col 3:16)

Hold Your Conviction

back yourself because He has your back

Whatever it is that you are struggling with you are struggling with it for a reason. God has placed not only your purpose in front of you, but the resources to overcome whatever may be standing in your way in achieving that purpose. Hold tight to what He has put within you and be prepared to back yourself because He has your back. When you back yourself in Christ you also back Christ Himself as you seek to fulfil His purposes rather than our own.

Overcoming Spiritual adversity and getting back on track then you see, is more about how we engage the gifts and tools of God than anything else. When we use His design, of working with each other in Christ, of seeing things from the Father’s perspective and start our journey with prayer we are already re-aligning to the track that we thought we had lost sight of.

If you’re feeling stuck, pray hard, read lots and seek good counsel from others because you will move forward but maybe its about employing more of His tools first.


wp-image-276537820© Andrew Jewell- Wedgetail Ministries






#MondayMinistry – We Step, We Oxygenate, We Thrive

wp-image-116649849bg-blogger-badge-500x500-e1387301563797By Andrew Jewell

It is easy to take our Faith for granted, particularly if we have been walking with Him for a long time.  But today I wanted to break down just what is happening in us when we walk in Faith everyday. We step, we oxygenate and we thrive – thoughts on 3 steps of Faith.

We Step

The Walk of Faith . The feeling of walking on nothing, yet with tangibility. The feeling of walking on a thin veil of paper, levitating us above everyday problems, translucent yet strong.

We must trust in what we cannot see in order to see in what we have put our trust.

boards-2040575_1280Visualising Faith for me conjures movie scenes from one of the great fantasy genres, each step into nothingness is met with a solid stone underfoot, holding us above the abyss. Such is the nature of Faith.

We must trust in what we cannot see in order to see in what we have put our trust. We must employ and exercise it before it can become useful to us. This how we step out in Faith just as Peter did when Jesus called him out of the boat (Matt 14:29) . I imagine Peter considered Jesus had lost His mind, either that or he had lost his own.

This step for each of us is different, from simple aspects of belief through to a full reliance on God as to a certain outcome in our lives, purely because it is beyond our control and has to be left up to Him. For me most recently it was about sustenance and provision, as anyone that runs a Faith ministry will tell you we are very much reliant on what God has next around the corner. Perhaps you can remember the last step of Faith that left an impact on you as well.

We Oxygenate

woman-570883_1280If our Faith lives in a matchbox at the back of the cupboard it is useless, but when we take it out and strike it aflame with oxygen (prayer and the Word) and fuel (Faith in action) it spreads like a wildfire.

We oxygenate our Faith in order to breath life into it by the Holy Spirit. The word for ‘Spirit’ in NT Greek pneúma’  actually means breath. So as we exercise our Faith more, give it room to breathe,  the Holy Spirit breathes  into it expanding our Faith so that we may exercise more Faith again. And so we see a cycle- Faith, feeds breath (Holy Spirit), feeds Faith. We oxygenate our Faith for the Holy Spirit to oxygenate and expand our trust.

We Thrive

The more we exercise our Faith, the deeper our roots go and the more we thrive. We push ourselves to the next goal, the next Spiritual conviction and the next leap of Faith. Just like a child learning to walk God build’s us up slowly, a little step here, a small jump there and a finally a quantum leap to our  next understanding.

 Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. (Col 2:7)

We know from plants that they need water and food to root deeply. Likewise we need to tend our Faith, feeding it daily from many sources of nutrients. Prayer, fellowship, the Bible, solid Christian teaching and so on.

So as a challenge – what will you do today as your next step of Faith? How will you oxygenate it? And how will you choose to help it thrive?


©Andrew Jewell – Wedgetail Ministries

#Monday Ministry – Learn to Rest in Him First

wp-image-1406554649 ‘Learn to rest in Him first, then you are better prepared for the long walk of faith.’

By Andrew Jewell


Ministry has its challenges

Running  a growing blog such as this as a ministry on top of a normal job has its challenges. Often exhausting Spiritually, emotionally and physically, trying to get the balance right is often like trying to teach a fish to dance.

Only today whilst experiencing a brief moment of slightly overwhelmed panic my partner in her loving and steadying wisdom reminded me to be still. To take the time she knows I need to relax back into the privilege God has called me into, to sit back and let Him take the wheel. To rest in Him first.

I’m sure many of you are susceptible to hurry sickness as I am and its potential to bring us all undone from time to time. But as I note in the opening quote learning to rest first rather than only when we think we need it is vital for the stamina we need to fulfil our calling in Christ.

A Lesson from See-Saws


When we see children on a see-saw (teeter-totter) we understand that balance comes in two ways. The force required to push off the ground and be carried into the air, and the momentary rest whilst we wait for the other side to counterbalance by doing their bit.

Maintaining a ministry is similar. Often we are either cued to commence the journey by God or He commences it for us. As the journey continues He does His bit and we do ours, and so it progresses with many ups and downs but nevertheless with a sense of perpetual satisfaction.

But what of those other times? You remember… when the see-saw gets stuck because the equilibrium is dead centre. Both of you on either end jiggling and bouncing to get movement again. These times are when from a Spiritual perspective we are forced to be patient. Why? Because we cannot move and are forced to do nothing but be content to wait and stare into the eyes of God.

It’s often confronting and a little scary in these times, partly because of what we can see and partly because of what we can’t. Put simply all we can do is wait for Him to move again.

But before we came to that point, that pregnant pause of guidance, we first had to be still. We had to recharge, to re-focus and re-evaluate who’s move it actually was.

It’s in the stillness we learn how more effectively to rest in Him. To allow Him to recharge us and recommence the journey.

 ‘Learn to rest in Him first, then you are better prepared for the long walk of faith.’


wp-image-276537820©  2017 Andrew Jewell –



#MondayMinistry ~ In Search Of Whimsical God

wp-image-1406554649Usually on this blog I tend to tackle things that have more of a serious ‘edge’ such as Grace, Spiritual warfare, counselling and the impact of faith in our everyday lives.

Today is a little different, today I want to talk a little bit about the whimsical nature of God. A God that is not only fascinated by diversity, but moreover loves to be whimsical.. Here are five things that fill me with the joy of the nature of my Creator. Welcome to my search of whimsical God.

My God Has a Sense of Humour

Let he who has never mused over the sight of platypus cast the first stone.


At some stage I think most of us have thought, if we believe in a Creator God that He must have sense of humour. A swathe of colour here and a twist to a bone there and we have a new creature. Beautiful and unique in its own way.

We may dare to imagine even still  the dialogue in heaven governing the Creator’s brush.

‘Ok… left a bit…right.. a bit, no no that bill looks the same as the last one, twist… yes that’s it, now pull on the neck yes that’s good.. that’s very good, they’re gonna love that :)’


Let he who has never mused over the sight of platypus cast the first stone.

My God Loves Variety..Well, ..’Cause He Can..

My God loves variety as we experience every day. He appears to take a whimsical yet purposeful approach even to His own people.  A small refinement or removal of a particular muscle shape, pigment or piece of fatty tissue and we each look completely different. A different upbringing, in a different place, each with a different experience of the Father and ‘boom!’ a whole new creation, just for Him, by His hand and by His design.

children-82272_1280.jpgBut did He stop there? Certainly not.. He added language, and height to the shape, different strengths and gifts, different loves and passions, likes and dislikes.. right down to taste and smell. Why we may ask?…Perhaps simply because He can. Because He chooses to be loved by His artwork, these fragile lumps of clay. His people, His creation to fellowship with , to speak to so many so differently and love in many different ways. Such is my whimsical God.

My God is a God of Beauty


As an artist (or at least this one) part of what makes beauty beautiful is the whimsical nature of it. I love how a few essentially random colours and shapes thrown together can produce something stunning. Likewise I wonder if the Father does the same.

Lets face it a lot of God’s creatures, His mountains, valleys, plants and even natural phenomena are essentially odd to the analytical eye. Who would think that a few rocks, ground covers and vines with a smattering of shrubbery would produce something wondrous.


But time and time again it does, sculpted by the Master’s hand with purpose and perfection. As His creation we are likewise tuned to this Master’s harp, our loving God that loves to delight in all He has done. We understand and appreciate things in a certain form, a curve over a straight line, a kaleidoscope of colour over black and white, and a menagerie of creatures that dance, twist, sing and roar to the vibrance of creation.  Such is the whimsy of our beauty-loving God.

My God is a God of Purpose

Food could have dropped from the heavens at regular intervals, or we may have been created to not need food at all…


Way back in Genesis God appointed humanity to have dominion over the earth (Gen 1:28), which got me thinking. Unless God loved the process, loved diversity, loved the whimsical nature of beauty and loved to give good things to His kids, why grant us creation as we know it at all?

If the Father simply wanted a human playmate and dutiful worshippers He could have left us on an essentially baron piece of land looking nothing like the Earth and the Universe as we know it. Food could have dropped from the heavens at regular intervals, or we may have been created to not need food at all… and lets not even get started on reproduction.

What a boring place it would have been, all be it that we would know no different. No, rather our God decided that we would not only have purpose but moreover rich variety. In Each other, in our dwelling place and in how we come to know Him. God decided that each of us would be unique in Him, that we would have ears to hear, eyes to see and with a simple choice breathe in unison with Him. Such is our whimsical God.

My God is a God of Whimsy

Take this picture of a pigeon for instance


We understand or at least interpret the purpose of many things. But I can’t help but feel that God loves surprises. Take this picture of a pigeon for instance. We know in our human understanding that the magnificent headdress on said pigeon is likely part of their reproductive cycle, they are more eye catching and stand out to a mate. Possible with some kind of species ‘ranking’ process – ‘mine is bigger and better than yours so I am therefore the most suitable mate.’

But the God I believe in goes beyond simple attraction and purpose, in spite of the fact that as humans we may model similar behaviour. No my God considers the beauty of whimsy, the fact that an impressive spray of feathers sets off the whole package. Many of us may ourselves may use highlights and foils for the visually striking impact they have, sometimes simply to make a statement. Why, if we are made in His image should we think God is any different?

The Moral of the Story

What is to be gained you may ask of even exploring the whimsical side of our beloved Creator? Is there a moral to be gleaned at the end of things?

The Moral is simply this, that God is a whimsical God because He loves. He loves to delight in His creation and loves to share in the feeling of our hearts exploding with simple joy. From the relationship we share with His creatures, from the laughter they bring and love that they testify. From the artistic slope of the mountainside to the colour of each grain of sand pressing beneath our feet. This is a God of love, a whimsical God of Grace and purpose that loves to delight His children.

All He asks is that we love in return, that we love Him as He loves us, love one another as He loves us and love and care from the greatest to the meekest in His Creation… and back again.

When will you next love and delight in the whimsy of His creation I wonder…?

(*”Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE, Old testament Copyright © 1965, 1987 by the Zondervan Corporation. The Amplified New Testament copyright © 1958, 1987 by the Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.”)

wp-image-276537820© 2017 Andrew Jewell –

Walking Against the Wind – Spiritual Warfare and Leadership

By Andrew Jewell

Leadership is a funny thing…

Leadership is a funny thing, and in particular Christian leadership. It has the potential to take us to great heights of encouragement and at the same time send us tumbling head over heels like a tumbleweed through the streets of Jerusalem.

It can be isolating or invigorating, pulling us to do our best for those whom we serve whilst simultaneously causing us to question where and who we are ourselves in the overall scheme of things.

lead our people from the wilderness

In this part #4 of the Spiritual Warfare series I wanted to look at how as leaders we can ensure we stay strong against the tide of ever present spiritual opposition.  As leaders we often find ourselves walking against the wind, we challenge the tide of everyday expectation and seek to lead our people from the wilderness. Below are five things to bear in mind as we embrace what only we, each to our own particular path has been called to do;

Look to your own Spiritual side first


It seems like a statement of the obvious but it is just as easy for Christian leaders to neglect their own Spiritual growth and protection as it is for anyone else. We are after all focused on the well-being of others and we can easily forget that we have a part to play, a responsibility to ourselves also. We cannot point the way to truth and redemption if we have forgotten how to get their ourselves.

To attempt to lead without prayer is like attempting to drive a car without a steering wheel.

In an earlier post I talked about prayer being one of our primary weapons and in leadership it is vital. To attempt to lead without prayer is like attempting to drive a car without a steering wheel. Generally not a good idea, extremely difficult and usually resulting in disaster. We need to not only know that we are right with God first but moreover that we are hearing Him correctly.

Likewise being faithful in the Word serves the same purpose. In the professional world we must continually learn, grow, train and retrain and in our leadership walk this is essential. If we are to do it for God then we should be doing it better than if we did it for a company – so know your stuff and ensure that you stay strong in your Christian identity. Read your bible daily, meditate, learn from other great Christian influencers and constantly challenge yourself to find new ways to engage, commune with and become closer to God. When you’re strong your flock is strong and those around you see a bright beacon that points to the Father.

Put the right people Around you

supportLeadership is hard, whether that be as parent, a business person or a Minister. One of the things that makes that walk a little easier is by putting the right people around us. We see politicians place cabinets around them, CEO’s have their boards and many in ministry have their councils and committees. But the Christian in leadership also needs those around him or her that support their Spiritual and emotional walk.

Saying we need the right people around us is one thing, being able to find and or place them may be a different challenge altogether. Jesus had His 12, likewise we need a pool of people with different gifts that bring different elements to our lives and are supportive.

choose carefully and moreover choose prayerfully.

Naturally in the first instance this may be your spouse, trusted friends or family. But beyond this think about the Spiritual gifts that you need to help you stay on track. It may be Prayer Warriors, Prophets, Teachers or Evangelists. It may be a collection of mentor’s that are upstanding in their chosen fields, or it may be that one special person that we would trust with our life and Spiritual well-being – choose carefully and moreover choose prayerfully.

Look after your physical and emotional needs

Often we may feel our defences are secure. We pray and seek God regularly, go to church regularly and feel we’re in a pretty good place with God. That can all go out the window fairly quickly if our health takes a turn for the worst. I spoke in part one about how subtleties are the things that bring us undone the most, Satan’s most effective weapon being simple distraction to what’s really going on.

It is very easy to fall victim to that distraction when we are unwell, been pushing too hard, eating badly or neglecting sleep. Anyone that has had a bad case of the flu knows that its hard to stay positive, keep focus and maintain Spiritual well-being when we feel like we’ve been run over by a traction engine.

The best offence is a good defence and part of forming a good defence is knowing our limits and knowing what we need to maintain positive mental and physical health. In support of your own well-being strive for good quality sleep and a balanced diet to maintain optimal performance. Listen to your body and your mind and if you need to rest, rest.

Part of our emotional needs is also about maintaining balance, we need time for ourselves for growth and to recharge, time for whimsy, time for family and relationships and time for God. Even though we may be busy we can still find time to do what feeds us and those to whom we have an immediate connection and responsibility. Just as when someone jumps off a see-saw and we hit the ground with a thump, likewise its going to hurt one way or another if we forget to build in balance. Don’t give the Devil a foothold.

Be prepared to walk alone

man-888591_1920Make no mistake, true Godly leadership can be a lonely road. There will be things that only you can understand and revelations that are meant for you only. Moreover there will be times when we feel He has left us, when He seems to have taken His hand off us momentarily in order for us to learn, and it’s tough!

Be prepared to walk alone sometimes because no matter how many people we may have around us we all need to spend our own time in the wilderness, just as Jesus did. On the other side of that journey waits a deeper relationship, phenomenal growth and reward that only God can provide in the most meaningful ways.

As human beings we are raised to be pain adverse, to see anything that is uncomfortable or painful as bad. While this may seem to be truth in the immediate term, the long term is often God’s greatest concern. We are never broken unless He has a plan on how to put us back together again. The hard part is being patient through the breaking and rebuilding process, have Faith.

Hold fast!

Faith then is the key, the key that unlocks our unprecedented destiny. Only YOU can accomplish what He has predestined you to do in Jesus Christ. Only you can touch that person with the Grace of God where others have failed, only you can lead your flock from the darkness with the torch of Christ and only you can stand as the example God intended you to be, seated at His right hand with your brother and Saviour.

Hold fast in what you have been taught, what you believe and in where He is leading you. Trust His Word, trust His voice and trust your own ability to listen. It is then that we are walking against the wind with great success! A testament to other believers of what God can do in you.


wp-image-276537820© Andrew Jewell 2017 –


#Monday Ministry- My Empty Tomb

wp-image-1406554649 By Andrew Jewell

My Empty Tomb

Part of being a Christian is fostering our personal faith and walk with Christ. Not only are we part of a wider corporate body of Christ, but more importantly we are a people personally saved.

We all have one… an empty tomb, a place where our earthly ideals have been laid to rest only to find greater peace in a relationship with Christ. We all have an empty tomb where we chose to leave behind those tattered rags of self and step out into the light.

We drop our beliefs and desires on alters of stone and allow God to take such an incomplete, limited life and mould it by His design.

We leave behind an empty tomb not just of corporate desires and universal sins but moreover the very personal twists and turns of our own Journey.

Just as we choose to receive God and believe in the miracle of the resurrection, so to we have chosen to rise from our tomb of suffering. From every dark thing that pulled us down, each moment that drove us to anger and each interlude where we danced with the devil in despair.

We all have an empty tomb…  but sometimes we need to make the choice to take a step away from death and toward life. Just as Jesus stepped out of the coldness of the stone so must we.

Which direction will your next step be?




©Andrew Jewell –




Prayer, Power and Persistence

Welcome to part #3 of the Spiritual warfare series – Prayer, Power and Persistence. Rather than article as such today’s offering is basically a statement, a reminder of what prayer does, its vitality and its indispensability.

Over recent weeks I have spoken a lot about prayer in dealing with everyday spiritual adversity and in more specific areas including grief  and finding solace in difficult times. Moreover prayer is our most valuable, available and effective weapon… When we can do nothing else we can always pray.

Prayer begins where we stop, it is the fountain from which we draw all strength and the very lifeline that connects us to the Father’s heart. In context of Spiritual warfare it not only sustains us, but protects, defends and mounts an assault on the enemy beyond what we could possibly do alone.

‘Prayer begins where we stop, it is the fountain from which we draw all strength and the very lifeline that connects us to the Father’s heart.’

A central element to our prayer life however is not just that it is a means of merely exercising power, but that it teaches us persistence and discipline. It teaches us the importance of always reaching out to God no matter how big or small our problems may be. It teaches us of God’s faithfulness toward His children, of His jealous protection of His people and the immutable faithfulness that holds our relationship with the Godhead in place.

The great preacher and teacher Charles Spurgeon noted simply that;

‘To pray is to enter the treasure-house of God and to gather riches out of an inexhaustible storehouse.’*

*(C.H Spurgeon –

It is in this context that we minister and within this framework that we battle daily with those Spiritual assaults that disguise themselves so cunningly as wrong thinking, broken belief systems, broken down self image and evil self talk. It is in the persistent visitation to this storehouse of heaven that we find our strength and access immutable Grace. For if we do not pray how do we expect to come to know the Father other than as words on a page.

Moreover, whilst the Holy Spirit speaks and guides our interpretation and brings us to God’s presence, without conversation we are mute believers. How do we approach the throne of Grace if we do not ask? And how do we say ‘I love you’ if we never open our heart mind or mouth to speak.

Video courtesy of  YouTube – Lion of Judah


wp-image-276537820© Andrew Jewell –

#MondayMinistry ~ In HIS Time

wp-image-1406554649For You have been a shelter and a refuge for me, a strong tower against the adversary. I will dwell in your tabernacle forever; let me find refuge and trust in the  shelter of Your wings. Selah’ (Ps 61:3-4 AB )

What a wonderful thing it is to dwellTo be able to pause, hover and hesitate in God’s presence. To exist in His time, rather than our own.

Most often we can be guilty of being resentful of God’s timing simply because it doesn’t line up with our own. Our pride gets in the way and says -‘No Father, I know best!’ . How very thankful I am that I am wrong when I start to assume I have the full knowledge of my Father’s plan.

You see all this time in my forty something years I missed it… I have continued to argue about timing and when and how I think things should fall into place. But I missed the point. The point is not that when or how they might fall into place, but rather that the Father is in His Place… and wants us to be there too.

I totally overlooked the fact that as a Christian, the point wasn’t just in the timing of the end result, but in the timing that when I trust Him, I have longer to be able to spend time resting and waiting in His presence.

I have the time to dwell, and allow God to speak intimately, closely, with gentle whispers and grace. To hold my heart in His hands and gently massage it as we would holding a dove in our arms with a calming coo.

This was recently brought to my attention whilst reading II Peter 3:8-9;

‘Nevertheless, do not let this one fact escape you, beloved, that with the Lord one day is a thousand years and a thousand years as one day. [Ps.90:4.] The Lord does not delay and is not tardy or slow about what He promises, according to some people’s conception of slowness, but He is long-suffering (extraordinarily patient) toward you, not desiring that any should perish, but that all should turn to repentance.’ (AB)

I am left asking myself how it would look if instead of fighting the things i don’t understand, when they don’t happen when I want, if instead I revelled in the opportunity to rest in his Grace…

May the Father’s blessing rest upon you all,


(credit Christ Eternity – YouTube)

wp-image-276537820© Andrew Jewell –

#Monday Ministry- Under My Father’s Wings

By Andrew Jewell

wp-image-1406554649” The Lord recompense you for what you have done, and a full reward be given you by the Lord, the God of Israel, under Whose wings you have come to take refuge! Then she said, Let me find favor in your sight, my lord. For you have comforted me and have spoken to the heart of your maidservant, though I am not as one of your maidservants” (Rth 2:12-13)

This passage jumped out at me while reflecting on the recent tragic events of Charlottesville. How sad it is that often it takes a tragedy for people to recognise the need to treat one another with the Grace that Boaz afforded Ruth in the above passage.

Ruth was treated with kindness, Grace and respect despite the fact that she was not a member of his household. How often do we extend the same Grace to one another and what does it take for others to embrace an attitude of Grace? Moreover we read that Boaz acknowledges Who that Grace stems from and the comfort and shelter that being under my Father’s wings provide.

It is no accident that birds are used so often in the bible for their imagery. Many of us from young children are fascinated by flight and have wondered what it may be like to fly. Flight implies a sense of freedom, of Grace, of being uplifted, and in the the case of the eagle great power and majesty.

Such is the nature and rewards of being one of God’s Children. We have access to a freedom in Jesus Christ that we cannot attain on our own. Freedom from Sin, freedom of access to the Father, freedom to use and embrace the gifts of the Spirit, unconditional love and unsurpassed power to witness the Glory of God.

Charlottesville serves as a reminder that hate and division is never the answer. No reconciliation or growth ever comes from an attitude concerned with selfish preservation or seeking to secure our own selfish position over and above anyone else. No rather we are taught to reach out to one another in an attitude of Grace that others may know, just as Ruth did the shelter under my Father’s wings.

The story of Boaz and Ruth illustrates why this attitude of grace is so important. Without it Jesus would not have been born into the house He was (Ruth and Boaz’s family line led to David and by consequence onto that of Christ). Jesus would not have been raised by the parents He was nor likely to have been living in the place He was. God’s purposes included where and when Jesus would minister. It is no coincidence that this passage carries God’s message of Grace, as one of many precursors of the Grace that was to come.

Next time I am challenged by my own selfishness or fear I hope that I can recognise it for what it is and respond in Grace, no matter how small or large that situation may be. I hope you will too..


© Andrew Jewell –


Grief, Prayer and Spiritual Warfare

by Andrew Jewell

Often when we hear or speak about Spiritual warfare we are speaking in context of a fight of sorts. An ongoing battle for the soul waged against the unseen through manifestations or ailments that are very obvious. However this is not always the case, most often what we tackle and deal with daily are those life challenges that bring with them Spiritual challenges. One common area and the subject of this article, part #2 of this seven part series is grief, and grieving and Spiritual warfare.

The Nature of Grief

Grief has many faces

The reality is grief is something that we will all experience at some time during out lives. With loss, sudden or profound change or even psychological attacks on self and self worth (i.e. loss of perceived self or perspective) or another areas of our lives grief comes – and often sets up house.

Grief has many faces and sadly in our human condition it is a matter of when not if. But how often do we tackle this Spiritually? Often I would argue we are too embroiled in our emotions (and that’s OK for a time). We often cannot stop long enough to even consider how we might use prayer and our relationship with God to help us get through it.

More often than not, and as a very normal part of the grieving process we will spend time bargaining, arguing and railing against God for a resolution. A solution that we hope with take away the pain and stop us having to experience something that we are not at all comfortable with. Often times any other sort of prayer for help comes at the end, when we have reached the stage of acceptance and need a hand to pick ourselves up.

This has its own purpose because we realise when we stop fighting that He was there all along, He hadn’t abandoned us but rather was simply waiting for us to be still and come to him in our own time. It is in these times that true transformation and healing often takes place.

But what of the process proper? Where is the Spiritual battle? Is there not some way that we can find the strength to muddle through prayer and find solace in the scarcity of control?

Thankfully yes there is, because when we are out of control is when God is most in control. The Father has the space to act, behind the scenes and keep us moving forward and hold us together. Most often we don’t see because we feel out of control. But that doesn’t mean our Father is.

Proactively seeking the Father

I spoke in part #1 of this series about using prayer as an offensive weapon, that the best defense was a good offense, and in grief this is just as true. We know when disaster strikes that we will be numb, we won’t know what to do or how to feel, little-own how to act. We seek wisdom of our own understanding, looking for answers rather than seek to pray things through.

Ecc. 1:18 notes ‘For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge the more grief.’ (NIV) In other words when we seek wisdom without God we become frustrated, frustration leads to anger and in turn more grief. Such is the process.

However what happens when instead we begin to understand things in light of God’s will? When we pray for wisdom and emotional protection and for Him to bring us through in His will, not our own. All of a sudden our brokenness has become a prayer offensive. A show of force against darkness that is playing on the situation in our lives.

Likewise, when we maintain an active prayer life those lines of communication are already open. Our Spiritual troops and internal Spiritual defenses are already in place and holding the line. The troops are in place because God heard our prayers the first time. All the time through our communication with Him we were together fortifying our defenses.

The Why Question?

Inevitably we are going to ask the question ‘Why?’ . ‘Why did God let it happen?’, ‘Why me’ etc.  But maybe, just maybe we are simply not asking the right question. Perhaps what we should really be asking is when and who.

That is, it happened on Golgotha to Jesus Christ. Our access to a loving God, to be able to question the things we don’t understand, to have access to the Father all came about because of Christs sacrifice on the Cross. Likewise, our authority to command angels and intercede against those things that would try to keep us apart from the Father also came about through that single act of Grace.

You may be thinking about now that the above avoids the question, even that God avoids our questions. But when in fact it poses the very question at the core of our concern. Do we trust God, no matter how hard or confused or painful things seem to be acting in our best interest and on our behalf? -Just as He did on the Cross.

When we cry out,  we often cry out not just for an answer but for one we are happy with. But many things are and always will remain the mysteries of God, He remains sovereign and in control. Should He give us an honest and direct answer we simply may not in our fallen state be able to comprehend its true meaning.

There is peace to be found in being out of control, knowing there is someone and something bigger than ourselves.

In an earlier piece I wrote about Butterfly-faith and the butterfly effect on our faith. In similarity to the butterfly effect we rarely see the roll on affect of any one event, and certainly not to the extent that God sees it. We are human, we are finite and our extent of understanding to a significant degree is limited to our condition, particularly if viewed from a cosmological and eschatological view-point.

Again in Ecc 1:9 we read ‘What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again and; there is nothing new under the sun’ (NIV). Although what we are experiencing is devastating for us, for God it is also part what has been and what will be again in His Creation. It often seems of little comfort but it draws a picture of a God well beyond our own understanding of what we see unfolding in front of us and feel happening around us. There is peace to be found in being out of control, knowing there is someone and something bigger than ourselves.

The Prayer Offensive

To look to Spiritual warfare proper in context to grief prayer as in most areas is our greatest weapon. But using a weapon effectively also takes practice, training and building of certain relationship with that weapon until it is an extension of ourselves. Martial artists would regard it as muscle memory- you act out of where your body automatically has trained itself to go.

Acting Spiritually and emotionally is no different. If our first response is prayer, then our first response will remain prayer. Instead of praying because we are in trouble, we have already been praying and therefore better prepared to respond to adversity, more prepared to act and possibly even aware of what is to come. But again it is a relationship and therefore not one-sided. We need to listen for that still small voice of peace that is the Father. We need to be practiced enough to know it when we hear it. And we need to be sure enough in our relationship with God to be obedient to it.

Prayer alone is not our only weapon, nor our only defense as noted in part #1 , but it is nonetheless indispensable in dealing with grief and loss.



© Andrew Jewell –


#MondayMinistry – By His Design



wp-image-1406554649Lately I’ve been giving a lot of thought about what it means to live by design. What a great topic for this weeks #MondayMinistry.

As Christians we all struggle. Struggle to work out what Faith means, how it looks, what we should do. We strive each day seeking to be better. But to be ‘better’ we need to ask ourselves just how that looks.


Life and living by design means that somewhere in our thinking there has to be a map, a plan, a holistic schematic of what we are trying to create. Likewise there also has to be a Creator of that schematic. A Leonardo that has dreamed of our lives as a machine of fantastic wonder.

That Leonardo is the Father and we are by His design.

Seeking Satisfaction

As human beings we seek satisfaction, to achieve, to love, to be successful and be loved. This is His design. Where we get lost is when our own ideas on who we should be and what we should experience don’t line up with God.

We try to design our own path for the wrong reasons. To be more than the next person, to earn nore than our colleague, to appear happier and surrounded more with trimmings than others. That is often our design, and we have that choice.

The question then becomes ‘is that the choice I really want to take?’

We forget all too often all that glitters isn’t gold. Not just with money but who we model ourselves upon, who we are in relationship with and what we are seeking in that next promotion.

Do you really want to live by your own design without a map? Or by His design, as our design.

If He can hold the stars in the heavens and sustain every nuance of our lives purely out of love – do we really think we know how to do it better?

wp-image-276537820© Andrew Jewell –

Demons, Dust and Deception- Toward an understanding of Spiritual Warfare

By Andrew Jewell


Part #1 – Myth and Misdirection

Welcome to part 1 of a seven part series in discussing Spiritual warfare. Over the coming weeks I will be looking at common issues regarding the nature of Spiritual warfare, and where in this Pastor’s humble opinion things get confusing for believers if not down right scary.

We live in a time where we are surrounded by Spiritual imagery, from movies through to the simple religious items and icons we might pass on our streets. These things are part of who we are as a culture, and as believers have very real meaning and significance. So good, some not so good and others we may simply hold of little consequence.

I want to share a little about the subtleties of the Spiritual. About where myth and misdirection have become common place, often distracting us from the reality of the true nature of the ongoing Spiritual battle around us.

The Ease of Ignorance and the Fascination of the Fantastical

Ignorance is something that we exercise often because its easy. It’s easy to think of demons and angels fighting it out in the heavens- at a distance, not so easy to consider that that fight may be taking place right by our side. Its easy to conjure images of powers beyond our knowledge manifestly fighting for the well-being of man kind. Not so easy to accept that the Father may well have angels fighting for us personally on many different fronts to keep us from emotional harm, help us through a bad day, make sure those creditors are in check, or ensure our children don’t fall over and break themselves.

The fact is the majority of spiritual confrontation takes place beyond our sight. Happening on an ethereal plane that we in our human condition are often not able to view or experience. This by all accounts I imagine is a good thing. We have enough problems trying to understand the deeper musings of God for the most part without witnessing it with our own eyes or hearing it with our own ears.

What we know is limited to what we can draw from Scripture, early Church fathers, widely accepted apocryphal and pseudepigraphal text. The rest is largely subject to personal interpretation and what is revealed by the Holy Spirit. Due to movies and books we have come to expect the evidence of the demonic to be full Exorcist twists accompanied by shaking, screeching and all manner of the unexplained.

‘Let he who has never lost his temper with the coffee machine first thing in the morning cast the first stone.’

Whilst this may have some basis in truth in rare cases of bona fide possession, the ongoing battle with the demonic is far more subtle. In reality to lead even the most devout Christian astray the Devil doesn’t need to work that hard. Let he who has never lost his temper with the coffee machine first thing in the morning cast the first stone.

The Devil in the Detail

It is a bitter pill to swallow that we are not as bullet proof Spiritually as we would generally consider ourselves. Whilst we are under God’s protection we still live in a fallen world where things do and will go wrong on a daily basis. The question is how will we choose to deal with it when it comes.

Reality checking is one of those things that I believe we don’t do enough. As broken human beings we are very good at catastrophising. To tempt us or even to make us fall Satan need only que up a number of little things to get a big BANG at the end of it. A sleepless night and a broken cup here, a stubbed toe there and before we know it we are in a well of despair and self pity if not rage.

Sometimes as those formed from dust it is easy to be sucked up in the vacuum. Such is the nature of demons, dust and deception.

Myth and Misdirection- Over-Blowing the Beast

On the other side of the coin we can tend to focus too much on these little devils treating us as marionettes prone to madness. We can start to jump at shadows and get trapped into a war of feeling ‘under attack’ or that the devil made me do it.

‘marionettes prone to madness’

Theologically speaking if we trace it right back to Eden, the Devil didn’t make us do anything- We chose. And since then we have been choosing for ourselves moving forward. Whilst the unseen may tempt us to Sin, it is our choice to follow through. Our biggest problem is that it is often all too easy, extremely subtle and difficult to catch, regulate and address. That’s where prayer comes in.

The Best Defense is a Good Offence

Its a phrase we here a lot around the place with some merit. We often hear sayings analogous with war, but the reality is that we are in battle every day with the spiritual. Our weapons and defense the armour of God.

‘Pray hard daily, for strength, protection and all manner of things’

Ephesians outlines these tools in chapter 6:11ff not the least of which is a shield of Faith, sword of the Spirit – the Word of God and prayer.

Bottom line is that Prayer in an offensive weapon, not just defensive. In procurring a good defense then we need to go on the offensive to keep pesky spiritual critters at bay.

Pray hard daily, for strength, protection and all manner of things as Scripture teaches. Be bold in your walk and your faith as He has always got our back.

Remember that some of the hardest things to fight are the things we don’t see coming. It pays then to know your weak spots so you can address them in prayer and present a good offensive front. Get to know yourself and allow God to show you where the chinks are.

Life Imitates Art

Finally know your Bible. This is one of your primary weapons and how well you use depends on how well you know it. Its no accident that when we see exorcisms in the movies that they have a bible in one hand and recite scripture and scriptural concepts. Life often does immitate art and there is a long tradition of fighting darkness using the Word.

The same is true in everyday life. These are your weapons and by owning your identity as a Christian you are on the front line and need to know how to use them.

Demons, dust (us) and deception are a part of our everyday lives. But our power and authority rests in Jesus Christ.


cropped-wedgetail-bird-only.jpg © Andrew Jewell-


Finding Christ in the Silence of a Busy World


wp-image-1029833124I Can’t Hear Myself Think

Learning how to manage our thoughts when we are being bombarded daily with images, work and personal demands is no simple task. Add in time for devotions, prayer, meditation, household expectations and exercise and its easy to get overwhelmed.

How do we learn to find solace in the chaos? To remove our thoughts from the global drone and unplug and be with God. If there was an easy answer then I guess there wouldn’t be any need for this article.

So here are a couple of things that can guide us in finding Christ in the silence of a busy world.

Learning to Withdraw

First of all let me just say that the title of this piece-  finding Christ in the silence of a busy World sounds like a contradiction in terms from the outset. Nevertheless there is silence to be found in a busy World, we just have to know where to look for it.

Stop the World I want to get off

Like the hunt for assumed extinct animals, the trail is hazy at best. What happened to that quiet, still space that I know God occupied within me? What happened to my balance when all around me I hear screams of frustration and cries of desperation for stillness. Stop the World, I want to get off.

In Matthew 26 we hear of Jesus removing Himself to pray, in Luke 6 we read of Jesus going  up into a mountain to pray, in Acts 10:9 we read of Peter going up to the roof to pray. In each example we see that even Jesus and His Apostles, without the distractions of the internet, media and ever demanding modern lives – still needed to withdraw.

Moreover, the Bible speaks time and again of God offering a place of stillness and rest. In seeking this our part is to set ourselves apart. To withdraw where we can pray, meditate and push into God without distractions.

Is it easy to find that space? Often not, however we are called to make that space available for God. Find what works and at a time that fits your schedule and be disciplined it it. For when we set that time aside we are better rested, invigorated and have a clearer ‘line’ to our Father God.

Seek My Voice

Often I hear people say that even though they pray their prayers are not answered or they cannot hear God. Without getting into the finer points of the theology of prayer my first reaction is usually – ‘Have you stopped to listen?’

Its hard to hear God if we simply won’t shut up. We need to allow room to hear His voice, sense His guidance and experience His peace if our prayer life is to be effective and we are to move in His Spirit in our everyday lives.

being still is a skill

Additionally we need to seek His voice in that stillness. Some days may be easier than others but it is difficult to hear the whisperings of our heart if we can’t quiet our mind. This is where meditation becomes important. Whether that be meditating on scripture, focusing on a Christian image such as the Cross or the face of Jesus or simply on breath, being still is a skill.

Do or do not, there is no try.

As with any other skill, learning to be still takes practice and discipline. In part setting the scene and schedule and in part learning to identify when we need it. We all fall out of routine from time to time and it is then that it is hardest to find Christ in the silence of a busy world.

Be still

Sometimes the obvious solution is the best solution. To quote Yoda in  the Empire Strikes Back – ‘Do or do not, there is no try.’ In other words ‘Be Still’ means just that.


wedgetail-bird-only© Andrew Jewell –

3 Amazing And Powerful Things About Church And The New ‘Dr’


by Andrew Jewell

End of the World as we know it

What can I say, Whovians everywhere have been shaken to the core with the recent announcement of the first female Dr. Who! Not since Starbuck was replaced with a girl on the latest incarnation of Battlestar Galactica has there been such a stir. Is this the end of the Sci-fi world as we know it? Is there no end to the travesty as our favorite mainstays are taken over, changed and bent to the will of this changeling millennium?

To many of this dedicated fan-base it might well be early signs of end times and the coming apocalypse. I ask myself ‘what does it all mean?’

Moreover, what does this mean for us in the Church if end times are so near?

Luckily there are always things we as Christians and the Church can learn from changes in the world at large so lets have a good look at 3 Amazing And Powerful Things About Church And The New ‘Dr’

New Incarnations are a Good Thing- Get Radical

It has been said that the famous last words of the Church may well be – ‘ We never did it that way before’. We are often frightened to change what we know lest we plunge headlong into the abyss.

I wonder if the BBC had thought the same thing in adversity to change would there indeed be anything to discuss about the Galifreyan icon. The reality is the Church is well placed to learn from the competitive media market. One thing that big business, and particularly the media understand is that change, shock and awe is a very effective marketing tactic.

When is the last time the Church did the same- excepting perhaps the radical ideal of the newly born hellinistic Church?

That is not to say that we throw the baby out with the bath water and totally undo how we do things, but there is room to advance. Do we use the Media to its full advantage in advancing the Kingdom of God? And if so are we sending the right messages in the right ways?

Radicalize the Love.

One thing that producers and directors do well is innovate. Likewise we can do the same with our spread of the Gospel. New Themes, new platforms but with the same message of hope, grace and love. Radicalize the Love.

One of the things I hear most from teenagers and even up to younger middle aged adults is that they feel the Church can offer them little. They have lost the message of a radical, life changing, life affirming faith. We need new incarnations of the old message that reaches us where we live. Dr Who is up to incarnation number 13, I wonder then if the Church is brave enough to reinvent itself also?

Don’t be afraid to Rattle Cages

I would imagine that the release of such ground breaking news to the Whovian population as we witnessed recently was greeted by some with wailing and gnashing of teeth as it shook the Time- lord tradition to its knees. However, boldly venturing forth into the new, the new Dr was born. Heralded as a new beginning, much like the word of the coming Messiah spread through the ancient World over two thousand years ago.

And we are still talking about it today.

Often it seems in an effort to become ‘relevant’, the Church bends to the Spiritual dangers of societal pressure in an effort to be popular among men. However I would argue that the Church’s purpose is not to try and fit in, but rather rattle the cages wildly of the worldly and comfortable. In many ways the Church should be unpopular simply because it stands for everything the World is not. Rather than preaching the importance of being the best above the next person we preach humility. Rather than the glory of money and possessions we focus on the Spiritual riches to be found in Christ. And rather than glorifying the pride of revenge and ‘getting back’ at others we are called to model forgiveness.

Jesus never asked us to go forth and be popular. He simply asked us to go forth and make disciples. And that as many of us know often rattles cages. Why? Because we are contrary… A beautiful conundrum of how living in God’s will brings success in life. Because if we have that love that surpasses all understanding, and that flows through our very lives, we are rich indeed. Successful beyond measure and heirs to the Kingdom.

The new developments to our best loved Sci-Fi series rattles cages, is the Church, and indeed us as individuals brave enough to do the same?

Change Will and Must happen

Producers of successful TV and movie franchises understand that change is important to keep things fresh and interesting. Often that may be a gamble, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, but they have to take chances. They understand that culture changes with subtlety but you need to stay ahead of it. To ride the wave headlong into where it can take you.

The Church is the same in many ways. In order to stay in the game we need to understand that things change with generations and what is happening in the world. We don’t live in a vacuum. Does that mean we abandon our Christian principles or doctrines? Certainly not. But it does mean that what worked for worshipers as a platform 50 or even 20 years ago may not work as well now. The world is different, more connected, more immediacy, more technology and our communication style has changed. Now we may speak with people all over the world with a few strokes of a key.

The Church could ask itself then what this might mean to how we worship, how we teach others about God and how we commune and come together. Embrace the current wave. Once we work out what that is new experiences new ways and new forms of coming close to God through Jesus Christ will present themselves.

God built Creation to be ever changing, evolving in his Grace so that we might learn and experience as much of Him as possible. Theology even by definition is an active learning about God. Why then do we struggle to embrace new applications for worship, evangelism and Church growth?

A new Dr Who teaches us of the importance of embracing new incarnations. That change is a good thing and that moreover it is important to rock the boat from time to time. The reason we can see 3 amazing and powerful things about church and the new Dr may just be that we still have things to learn about embracing change.

The question remains what to we want to do about it?

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An Interview With Wedgetail Ministries

Below is a transcript of an interview with Andrew Jewell, founder of Wedgetail Ministries. Have a read and learn more about what Wedgetail is about.



Interviewer (Int.)-  ‘Tell me a little more about Wedgetail Ministries, its a relative unknown and I find it helps to know more about where people are coming from in their Ministry..’

Wedgetail Ministries (Wdge.) –‘Wedgetail started out for a number of reasons, I really felt a strong call for a Ministry that was focused on Church unity, providing solid Spiritual food and encouragement to anyone looking for greater communion with God.’

Int – ‘What kind of people do  you think use the service the most and visit the blog?’

Wdge- ‘Well, as I said it’s really about encouragement and we all need that from time to time. Often we need more than just what we are getting in the local church. We need to tend our own Spiritual growth in a proactive way also through prayer, reading our bible and so on. Wedgetail I guess adds another layer to that. Those that complete formal ministry training often study from great Christian leaders and the early Church fathers, Wedgetail kind of fits into that category. I’d like to think it provides another avenue to grow, commune and learn.’

‘So those that I would hope seek out the service is anyone looking to learn about God and to be encouraged in their common faith. Hopefully also to find a home if that is what they are looking for..’

Int – ‘Interesting that you use the term find a home, what do you mean by that?’

Wdge ‘Over the years and particularly since I have started this online Ministry I have noticed an increase in people feeling becoming more and more disillusioned by the traditional church context for a number of reasons.’

Int – ‘What sort of reasons?’

Wdge ‘How long have you got! (laughing)  … In all seriousness though people get disillusioned for many different reasons. I want to stress that this Ministry isn’t about encouraging people away from the traditional setting. But rather providing an alternative for those that don’t feel they fit in. For some it is simply that they don’t like crowds or get self-conscious, for others it is because they have had a bad experience within the congregational setting. One of our biggest challenges in the Church is that we are full of broken people and sometimes they have sharp edges.’

‘Others may be disillusioned with structure, a particular focus or Theology or preaching style and have become a little gun-shy after many failed attempts to feel at home. Wedgetail offers an online alternative to that through pastoral support, articles about Faith and the Hive newsletter.’

Int – ‘So then is Wedgetail a Church?’

Wdge – ‘The answer to that one is both yes and no. No it is not a Church as we traditionally understand it but on the other hand the Greek term for the Church is ‘ecclesia’ which means gathering. To that end Wedgetail is a place for a gathering of believers all seeking the common goal of being closer to Christ in a message of Christian unity.  Wedgetail seeks to throw off those robes that divide us if you like to be as one body of Christ. In some ways Wedgetail is an online family. 

Int – ‘Ecclesia is an unusual term for a layman, what is your background

Wdge – ‘I studied for the Ministry a number of years ago and so have a Theological degree and Pastoral experience but also various bits and bobs around counselling and other areas with an extensive background in both.’

Int – ‘What are the next steps, where do you see the ministry being taken?’

Wdge ‘It’s certainly been a steep learning curve and the site and the ministry is evolving all the time. Really Wedgetail is turning into an online congregation of sorts for those looking for rest and growth in the promotion of Christian unity. Much of how the Ministry is delivered will be facilitated through the Hive newsletter and the blog but there’s also a few other ideas on the way. Certainly there is a myriad of possibilities when working with a new medium like online… so it’s really a watch this space moment.’

Int – ‘Say I’m looking for encouragement and maybe I’m feeling a bit tattered around the edges, how can I become involved?’

Wdge ‘The best way is to sign up to the Hive through the pop up or just go to one of the editions on the site and also following the blog. There’s also a facebook page, twitter and instagram that often has different content. I  also regularly accept prayer requests and queries through the site in addition to the articles and newsletter. Even if you are just looking for some general advice or someone to talk to about your Faith walk. In addition to that I also offer online counselling for deeper issues and a Pastoral and Congregational support package which is a fee for service set-up.’

‘As I say there are a lot of changes on the way as to how I Minister through the site including different avenues for worship etc. so my advice would be to follow along and check in regularly’

Int – ‘Is there anything else you would like to add?’

Wdge ‘Just I guess that it doesn’t really matter too much how you choose to worship or where you feel at home. As long as there is a Cross there somewhere you’re on the right track. Pray carefully, listen and seek good advice and nourishment, we’re all in this for the same goal – to see the Kingdom come in its fullness. I’d urge everyone reading to please make sure they are getting fed somewhere, the Christian walk can be difficult but amazingly satisfying and we all need help sometimes to stay in tune with God.’

‘As I’ve been known to state before – ask yourself how loud the Church could shout if we shouted in one voice.’



© Andrew Jewell – Wedgetail Ministries  2017






Building a Philosophy of Grace

by Andrew Jewell


A Bit about Grace

We talk a lot about Grace as a concept within the Church. Usually (and rightly so) in reference to Christ’s redeeming work on the Cross. Not so often however do we discuss the Grace as something we show to one another as an outpouring of the Grace God has shown us.

Often we talk about forgiveness and love as separate entities, however taken together these things are an expression of Grace. We choose to give freely in love, out of the love God has given us and forgive as He forgave us. give on top of forgiveness..

But what about our own expression of Grace- not simply Christian love or choosing to forgive but choosing to look past what may have been done to us to act in a way that will empower, lift up and edify someone else. Not just to forgive, but moreover to give on top of forgiveness.

It’s very easy to say we will be kind and edifying  to those that in our opinion deserve it. It is another entirely to edify others for the sole reason that they don’t deserve it- Just as Jesus did.

To clarify, acting in love toward those that seek it or need our Christian love is part of our Christian walk, to be the expression of Christ on Earth. But to go the extra mile, to move beyond ourselves to lift before God those that have hurt us emotionally, physically or spiritually brings us to the foot of the Cross. We experience first hand the greater secrets of Grace that we forget.

Outpouring Love

Jesus was crucified not because we deserved saving, but solely because we didn’t deserve Salvation. Grace was not simply a response to our need, but an outpouring of Love because the Father chose to act beyond Himself for those that could offer him nothing in return. Instead we offered only human brokenness, frequent unfaithfulness, disobedience and betrayal spattered with a light dusting of love. Often when we feel it is in our interest to seek his relationship and mercy.

The nature of Grace is that which gives beyond forgiveness, moves beyond where we can move ourselves and points always to the Father.

When is the last time you acted in true Grace as the Father has shown us… and when will the next opportunity arise? When can we next build our Philosophy of Grace?

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A Letter to My Father


Dear Dad,

For so long you have nurtured me, fed me, picked me up when I have fallen and loved me even when I have railed against you. You have been there through thick and thin, teaching me along the way, teaching me to trust… over and over again teaching me to trust, I must be a slow learner….

Like an incensed puppy, intent on chewing my way through everything I could touch I have rebelled. I have sought paths that you have encouraged me away from and again and again. And again and again I have found myself floundering face down in my own water bowl. Only for you to lift my head time and again to stop me from drowning in my own curiosity.

Father,  when they Crucified my Brother, though your cry shook the earth you still found time to set aside a space for me. A Space in your heart was aligned to me, a place by your side, an inconceivable inheritance always behind your plans for me. What have I done that I should be considered so special? What have I done that no matter all your concerns of the universe you still find it important to find time… for me. 

I answer myself knowing that there is nothing that I have done, nothing that I could possibly do to make myself worthy. That only in your Grace and your love is such a position in your heart possible. I cannot force you or anyone else to love me any more than I can hold the wind in my hands. 

Every time I reach up I find you reaching down. Every time I cry out, I hear you cry louder at the pain of your beloved child. Yet every time my tears roll your gentle hand is there to brush them away and say ‘be still my child, for I Love you more than the power of a thousand oceans’.

Father you are my rock, my foundation when everything else is slipping away. My potter when I am nothing but ruins and I love you.

I know one day we will meet again face to face but until then I have your voice to carry me . To see me through as you have time and again. Eternal, relentless, pursuing love. Far more than I can offer.. sometimes more than I can cope with, but always a direct chain from my heart to yours.

Say ‘Hi’ to my Brother Yeshua, I’ve missed Him and looking forward to seeing Him again soon.

I Love you Dad,


–   Andrew








Verse of the Day

Christian Context

“One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.”

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭27:4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

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God Is Doing Something New

Pure Glory

by Hazel Straub

Has the change in the weather gotten your attention? The turmoil happening all around us, shows us that change is here. God has heard prayers for hearts to turn towards him and to bring hope to hopeless. Those places and people who appear dry and hard. Areas in your life, depression, discouragement and despair, released and gone.

Watch! Rivers of life from the throne of God will flow, turning the desert into fertile ground. God sees us and brings refreshment to the weary. His love makes a way through your wilderness, nothing is impossible for him.

For I am about to do something new.
See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?
I will make a pathway through the wilderness.
I will create rivers in the dry wasteland. (Isaiah 43:19 NLT)

© Crown of Glory International Ministries. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without…

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