When I was thirteen I decided I was an atheist, so, the next Sunday morning I went over the fields at the back of our house and only went back indoors when I knew my mum had set off for church. My dad—who never went to church—greeted me with, ‘You’re in trouble, you are’, but I never was.
A few years later I made friends with a boy called Stuart and—as you do—we argued about the existence of God. It didn’t take long before I realised that I hadn’t got a case and ended up going to his church youth group. Over time I began to see the connections and increasing realised that God really was there and eventually was convinced enough to be baptised.
When I got to university I found that—though I knew God was the answer to my questions—I couldn’t quite connect up the bits in between. My big issue was with the meaning of life and I hadn’t really sorted this out by the time I returned for my second year. I decided that I was just going to work hard and play hard.
But then I met up with a guy who has become a life long friend. (We still meet up with our wives every couple of years and stay in touch in between). Our first conversation lasted for about five hours. One thing he said was completely new to me—being with God was an adventure —and I really latched on to that. I was so impressed that I joined him at a student weekend event where the Christian faith was to be talked about.
You can hear what happened by clicking below.
Even though I live a normal existence with a wife and three kids—though only one is at home at the moment—life has become an adventure and is getting more adventurous—sometimes scarily so—as time goes on. A few years back I left a secure career in teaching to start a Wiltshire based charity which runs a mobile community centre all over the place. You may have seen our big Open Blue bus on the road. The charity has established itself and is beginning to grow, taking me out of my comfort zone. Following Jesus has made my life significant and the journey started with a couple of teenage friendships.
Andy cooking on board the Open Blue bus