According to the Fourth Gospel, Andrew had been a disciple of John the Baptist, who directed him to Jesus. In his turn, Andrew brought his brother, Simon Peter to Jesus. I wonder whether Peter had till that time dismissed his brother as a flakey “seeker” or left him to take the initiative and investigate what he was to busy to do? Which brother was elder or which was the leader of the duo, we do not know.
In any event, both were sufficiently impressed by Jesus, and both were sufficiently ready, to drop everything and become the first followers of the Christ. John’s Gospel also identifies Andrew as the Apostle who points out to Jesus, among a hungry multitude, a boy with five barley loaves and two fishes. He may have failed to see the full potential there, but he was at least going in the right direction.
We realize from the other Gospels that Andrew and Peter were among those hiding behind locked doors after the death of Jesus; perhaps Peter’s betrayal and remorse brought the brothers yet closer together. After the Ascension, the Acts of the Apostles pictures them keeping vigil in the Upper Room before Pentecost. Both would die as martyrs, that is, witnesses, to the faith, both crucified like their Lord, victims of government coercion and persecution. They had learned strength, courage, trust and total commitment from their weaknesses. I presume that having experienced mercy, they learned to be merciful.
That is how Andrew preaches to us–by what he lived more than by the few words we have, attributed to him. Thank God for that, for he meets us where we are at in our fallible, if seeking, lives.