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Book: Andrew Murray: Destined to Serve

Author: Olea Nel

Author’s Bio:

Dr. Olea Nel was born in Cape Town, South Africa. After completing her training as a teacher in Andrew Murray’s heartland of Wellington, she relocated to Australia to further her studies. Besides attaining a Ph.D. in Linguistics, she also has qualifications in Information Studies and Theology. She has taught at several tertiary institutions in Australia.

As an active Christian and a pastor’s wife, she is often called upon to speak at women’s groups.

Having recently retired from her secular position as a senior librarian at the National Library of Australia, she is now able to pursue her passion for research, especially within the fields of church history and biography. Her aim is to serve God by sharing her findings with other Christians. She is presently writing the first novel in a trilogy on the life of Andrew Murray.

Blog/ Website: www.onandrewmurray.com

Social Media:  Goodreads, Amazon, LinkedIn, Google+

Genre: Christian Biographical Novel

To order book: softcover or kindle on Amazon


A boyish and fun-loving Andrew Murray arrives back in South Africa after being ordained at the Hague on his twentieth birthday. He soon discovers that his preaching lacks the power displayed by his heroes of the faith. He therefore decides to embark on a quest to become a powerful preacher filled with the Holy Spirit.

But not long after his appointment as pastor to the Dutch emigrants beyond the borders of the Cape, he finds that he is being shunted off course by a frenetic round of preaching tours that sap his energy and leave him little time to spend with God. He also finds himself having to cope with an overly demanding church council, as well as walk a tightrope between the Boer farmers and the British Settler community who are bent on land speculation to the detriment of neighbouring tribes.

Feeling overwhelmed by the task, and knowing that he was pressed into taking it, he starts to doubt his calling. It does not take him long to realize that he has to either man-up or bow out.

WALK with Andrew Murray as he negotiates his first year of ministry to the Voortrekkers in the Orange River Sovereignty and the Transvaal between the years 1849 and 1850.

PLACE yourself with him in the wilds of Africa teaming with game, lions and African wolves.

THROW into this mix the British, who at the Battle of Boomplaats in 1848 have just taken over the land between the Orange and Vaal Rivers.

IMMERSE yourself in a world where the Boer is forever ready to rebel against their British overlords, and where Paramount Chief Moshesh of the Basuto is constantly threatening war against the British and neighbouring tribes.

OBSERVE how Andrew Murray at twenty-one is able to straddle the divide between Boer and Brit and grow into his role as lone pastor, eager to serve his far-flung congregation of over 20 000 souls.


I give it 5 stars out of 5.

Andrew Murray was one on the main founders of the Christian faith, who had the same struggle as a normal Christian person has: overworking, doubting, finding the calling, and following the destiny.

Olea Nel wrote the book in a way of fiction novel, easy-to-read. As a biographical writing, it didn’t feel like overloaded with information, but Olea Nel waved the facts and events smoothly into the story with her conversation, thoughts, and background.

It has a refreshing view on the Christian lifestyle and everyday struggles. The transformation of a man of God from little boy to the grown and mature minister of Gospel. He was born to serve.

Murray traveled to serve and minister in Africa and Europe. What a courage, faith, and maturity the man needs to posses to travel away from the home into a different continent and serve with a passion to everyone who comes in the road, at the same time being completely obedient to God and willing to move as God directs.

This book provides a great deal of history on a colonial South Africa in 1849.

* My review is based solemnly on my opinion.

The book was provided by BookCrash as a complementary copy for my honest review.