Hi! Thanks for coming here to check out my blog.
I’m an ordinary sort of fellow. My main claim to fame is that I’m coming up 80 and am still happy.
That is chiefly because I have been a committed Christian since the age of twelve and have enjoyed God’s presence and blessing in countless ways ever since. So most of my blog posts have a Christian slant, as you’ll see.
I’m still very much on a journey of faith. Some of the Christian notions I once held dear I have now pushed to one side, letting others take their place. I’m now a lot less dogmatic on doctrinal issues than I used to be, and a lot more Jesus-focused.
For many years my website was where I posted most of my thoughts, observations and book reviews, but this blog is now the main repository of such writings. But you can still see the website at http://www.davidmatthew.org.uk
I hope what I have to share here will prove stimulating and helpful.
If you would like informing from time to time of what new posts I have uploaded, you can subscribe to my mailing list by emailing me here.
To give things a context, here’s a bit about me and my history…
I was born in Malton, in East Yorkshire, England, in 1940 and grew up in a stable Christian home. My parents were Methodists.
During his time away in the Second World War, my father joined the Open Brethren. At the end of the war he moved the family to the city of Bradford in West Yorkshire, and it was there I grew up. I became a committed Christian myself at the age of twelve.
At Bradford Grammar School I gradually veered towards languages and sat my ‘A’-levels in Spanish, French and English. From there I went to Bristol University, from where I graduated in 1962 with a Special Honours BA in Spanish Studies. While at university I was active in the Christian Union and became Missionary Secretary.
The year of my graduation, I married my childhood sweetheart, Faith. We continued to live in Bradford, where I did a year’s school-teaching before taking a year out in 1963-64 to get my Graduate Certificate in Education at the University of Leeds. After that I taught in several local schools and eventually I became Deputy Principal of Bradford’s largest Middle School.
Since an early age I had felt the call to full-time Christian work. This dream came to fulfilment in 1976, when I left school-teaching to become part of the pastoral team of The Church House Fellowship, a new evangelical, charismatic church in Bradford. This church (later morphing into the Abundant Life Church and now Life Church, Bradford) was formed from the merger of three smaller groups, including the Brethren assembly in which I had grown up and where I had eventually been recognised as an elder. The merger took place under the ‘apostolic’ direction of Bryn Jones.
In time I moved from pastoral activity into project-type work with Bryn’s organisation, Covenant Ministries. In 1980 I set up Covenant College for him and his team and served as its principal for the first few years.
Then I worked briefly under Arthur Wallis on the editorial staff of a Christian magazine, Restoration, before becoming editor myself, which kept me busy for the next eight years. During that time I also did some book-editing and began writing. My first book, Church Adrift, was published in 1985 and was followed by six others.
Next, having moved from Bradford to Leicester, I gave myself to the editing/writing of a ten-volume theological series, the Modular Training Programme, for Covenant College. This project came to an end in December 1995.
During all this time I had continued teaching at Covenant College, specialising in New Testament Greek, as well as travelling to preach and teach in churches in both the UK and overseas. I forged special links with churches in Zambia’s Copperbelt and North West Province.
In January 1996 my wife and I went to South Africa for two years to set up a Bible college for a group of churches there. We lived in Centurion, near Pretoria. The college saw its first batch of (mostly black) students graduate successfully in December 1997, after which we returned to the UK, handing over the college to local church leaders as a going concern.
On our return we felt that our work with Bryn and Covenant Ministries had reached a natural end, and we moved back to West Yorkshire—to Castleford and the Five Towns Christian Fellowship, with which I had had close links for many years.
After a short time I was received into the church’s eldership team and from August 1998 began to serve the church on a full-time basis. I retired from eldership responsibility in October 2009 and in 2013 moved with my wife to live nearer our children in Cornwall. We are happily involved there with Hope Church, Penzance.
All three of our children are grown up. We are delighted that they are all active Christians and fully involved in their own churches in South Wales and Cornwall. We are blessed with four super grandchildren.
[If you’re interested, you can read my memoirs here]