Andrew was born into an unbelieving family; however, his parents had made professions of faith by the time he was three years old. Their professions were the result of a true work of the Spirit; therefore, he reaped the spiritual benefit. The Lord’s call on Andrew’s own life was not discovered in an extra-ordinary breathtaking moment, but rather, in a steady and blossoming knowledge that he was a child of the Lord.
The flavor of Andrew’s upbringing was the typical denominational mixed pot. By the time he had reached high school he had become something akin to a hybrid dispensationalist or perhaps just a confused Calvinist. In high school Andrew began to actively teach and minister in the church.
The doctrinal confusion begun to be polished into some clarity after the completion of a one year Bible school that focused on the personal application of biblical truth. That year of study, mixed with the remnants of the Westminster Confessions and his own theological inquiries, led him to a love of Reformed theology. Besides doctrinal clarity, the Reformed faith captivated him with its emphasis on the holiness of God that flows out into reverent worship – both in and out of the house of God. The desire to join a community that valued such emphases drew Andrew to the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA).
Andrew's Work and Ministry
After Bible school, Andrew studied in the field of telecommunications and took a job as a telecom technician. Over time, this position developed into a career as a telecommunications engineer. Throughout this season of life, Andrew was also involved in ministry as a volunteer youth pastor. For a period of time, he was a telecommunications engineer by day and a youth pastor by night.
Andrew and Amy!
This stage of life came to an end in 2005 when he “captured” and married the beautiful and elusive Amy Troja. The combination of volunteer youth pastor and full time engineer did not leave much time for him to be a new husband, so Andrew scaled back his level of ministry involvement. The separation from active ministry in the church only lasted for two years. Despite a successful business career, Andrew became convinced that his calling was to teach and preach God’s Word.
Andrew and Amy and joined a local PCA church in Tacoma Washington where he began to work with the youth and teach adult Sunday school. His re-entry into teaching and youth work provided an external verification of his call to the ministry. Andrew received affirmation from the elders, as well as from a steady stream of congregants who offered unexpected encouraging words. Andrew recalls with amazement how God directed him with these choice words and spurred on his enthusiasm to pursue seminary and full time ministry.
Andrew's call to the Pastorate
It was a given for Andrew that heading off to seminary would be an epoch in his life. He had intended for it to be a transition into full time ministry. Initially he had the desire to pursue theological training so that he might be more thoroughly equipped to prepare sermons and study God’s Word. As he looks back to his time at Covenant Theological Seminary, he would say that God gave him a purposed time of preparation and equipping for the service of God and his church. During this time, his vision of the pastoral role expanded.
A minister is more than a man who preaches sermons from the pulpit. He is the man who winsomely encourages God’s people in their faithfulness towards their heavenly Father. He administers the sacraments to the congregation, sharing in their regular obedience, their entrance into the life of the church, their life defining moments and finally, their departure into the heavenly city. He is called to remind the congregation to think properly about their sin – confessing it and embracing God’s forgiveness and grace. He is to exhort them to live and to die for the glory of God. He is the man who purposes to serve God and man with excellence and humility, striving to make all his own endeavors a living testimony of the grace of God in his own life. He is God’s man to stand against the tide of unbelief and hold fast to God’s Word. Andrew desires to be such a man.
It is Andrew and Amy’s great joy to follow the gospel call to Alaska and begin a new church planting work on the Kenai Peninsula.