Marty Machowski is a Family Life Pastor at Covenant Fellowship Church in Glen Mills, PA, where he has served on the pastoral staff for over thirty years. He is the author of a number of family devotionals, curricula (including the Gospel Story for Kids), children’s books, and parenting titles. His latest releases include WonderFull, God Made Me for Heaven, Brave and Bold, Darkest Night Brightest Day, Angels on Your Side, and The Light Before Christmas.

In this interview, Marty talks with us about his latest book, Angels on Your Side.

FF: Being afraid of the dark is a common childhood fear. What inspired you to write a book for children who are scared of the dark?
During Christmas time, families will put an elf on the shelf who is watching over the behavior of the children leading up to Christmas. We all know, of course, that fun tradition has no basis in reality. But God is watching over us, and he sends his angels as his agents in that endeavor. Few children know what the Bible teaches about angels. So, I decided to write a book to teach them about God’s ministering spirits.

FF: Were you or any of your kids afraid of the dark when they were young? I’m sure you have some stories to share.
Most children go through a season where they are afraid of the dark. I can remember my kids asking, “Can you leave a light on?” There is something about the dark that is scary. Conversely, there is something about the light that is reassuring. The Bible teaches that darkness hides evil while light exposes evil. When it comes to being alone, nobody likes the dark, where evil lurks.

FF: There is something very special about Angels on Your Side. What makes it unique from any other book you have written?
Rommel Ruiz, the illustrator, used a 3-D format to highlight the supernatural side of the angels he depicted in the story. That makes this book different from any other I’ve written in the past.

FF: Introduce us to the story told in Angels on Your Side.
Logan goes to spend the night at his grandparents’ home when a thunderstorm blows in. The thunder and lightning scare Logan who calls out for his Grandpa. Grandpa comes in and comforts Logan with the truth that we don’t need to be afraid because God controls the storms and sends his angels to watch over us. But Logan doesn’t think angels are real. When Grandpa tells Logan that the Bible is full of stories about angels, Logan seizes the opportunity to ask Grandpa for a story and keep Grandpa close till the storm passes. It is in these Bible stories, retold by Grandpa, that Logan learns about God’s angels.

FF: What stories from the Bible does Grandpa tell Logan? How is the last story that Grandpa tells different from the others?
Grandpa tells three stories about God’s angel army. The first is the story of Elisha and the angles that appeared on the hills when King Aram came to attack (2 Kings 6). The second story is the day God’s angel army appeared to the shepherds to announce the birth of Christ (Luke 2). But the third story is about the day when God did not send his angels (Matthew 26). That of course, is the crucifixion of Jesus. Jesus could have called down God’s angel army in his defense. Jesus did not call them, and God the Father did not send them. The reason: Jesus went to the cross willingly for our salvation. Jesus refused the angels so that he could take our punishment and we could be saved.

FF: What are some misconceptions kids (and even adults) have about angels? What does the Bible say about angels?
When people think about angels, they often think of cupid-like creatures with bows and arrows that live on the clouds or picture women with wings. But God’s angels are mighty and are all depicted as men in Scripture. Angels are powerful messengers that can appear as glorious creatures with wings or appear as humans that seem like you or me. In fact, the Bible tells us that we should look for opportunities to show hospitality for some have welcomed angels as guests without even knowing (Hebrews 13:2).

FF: Do you believe angels take a present and active part in our lives today?
There is no reason to think that God has retired the angel army. God’s angels are at work continually praising him in heaven, and they are on assignment to watch over and protect his children, just as they have from days of old.

FF: What special connection do you have to Logan in the story?
Shortly after I wrote the book my son, Noah, and his wife, Emilee, had their first son and named him Logan. I chose a different name originally, but the editors liked the name, Logan, and changed the character’s name right about the time I learned that was my new grandson’s name. This August, I was able to read Angels on Your Side to my grandson, Logan, who is soon to be three years old. It was fun to share the story, and he loved that he and grandpa are both characters in the book!

Angels on Your Side
When You’re Feeling Scared
Marty Machowski
Illustrated by Rommel Ruiz
New Growth Press
Genres: Children’s, Middle Grade Kids, YA/Teen
Release Date: September 11, 2023

ISBN-10: ‎164507059X
ISBN-13: ‎978-1645070597

Book Summary:
When children are scared by a storm, afraid of the dark, or wake up from a bad dream, how can you remind them of God’s protection and love? When a storm keeps Logan up one night at Grandpa’s house, Grandpa comforts him with stories about angels in the Bible who are ever at the Lord’s command. Using 3D illustrations to depict the spiritual realm, children learn along with Logan that these angels are watching over us and always on our side.

Angels on Your Side by best-selling children’s author Marty Machowski dives into a biblical exploration of God’s army of angels. Logan’s Grandpa teaches him that not only are angels real, but God uses his mighty warriors to guard him. Logan learns that God’s angels are an invincible army fighting on our behalf in the strength of the Lord.

Fear and worry are emotions all children experience—especially at night. But when an incredibly powerful angel is on your side, there’s no reason to be scared or worried. Learning God is in control and has sent his angels to protect us can help children keep their fears in check and not be conquered by them.

Through Rommel Ruiz’s beautiful 3D illustrations and Gospel truth, Machowski guides children ages four to seven to understand that God is always with them. Accompanied by two sets of 3D glasses, Angels on Your Side will become a favorite bedtime story to help children remember the best way to combat our fears is to take them to God.


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About The Author

Marty Machowski is a Family Life Pastor at Covenant Fellowship Church in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania, where he has served on the pastoral staff for thirty years. Machowski leads Promise Kingdom, the gospel-centered children’s ministry of Covenant Fellowship. He is the author of numerous resources for churches and families, including The Gospel Story for Kids series, The Ology, and Parenting First Aid. His latest release is the children’s picture book, Don’t Blame the Mud. Machowski and his wife, Lois, reside in West Chester, Pennsylvania. They have six children and two grandchildren. He is also the Executive Editor for Children’s Resources at New Growth Press.