A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the impact that Ben Haden had on my life. Another important pastor in my life was mom's father Rev. R.J. Zehr. I doubt any of you have heard of him, and if he were still with us, he and I would probably have some interesting theological discussions . . . nevertheless he is one of my spiritual heroes!
Much of what I have come to appreciate about him came long after his death. Oh don't get me wrong, he was a fun grandpa! My deeper appreciation came after God called me to the life of a pastor. Grandpa Zehr was the son of Mennonite Pastor who migrated to central Illinois from Germany in the mid-nineteenth century. He only had one year of formal training at Moody Bible Institute before beginning his pastoral ministry. I believe East White Oak Mennonite Church, was his second and only church he served. He and the church left the Mennonite denomination in the 1930s, and became East White Oak Bible Church. He was there, and the church still growing when the Lord took him home in 1971.
The article below which was published sometime in the late 1920's really needs no commentary. Nevertheless, I am struck by his passion for ministry, and despite it being a large church for a rural setting, a modest or shall we say meager salary.