Who?

Psalm 15:4 “…honor the faithful followers of the Lord…”

I could hear the awe combined with joy in her voice:

“You’re Andy Telford’s granddaughter?!”

Andrew Telford and his twin brother Huey were born on a farm in 1895. His parents Thomas and Rose had immigrated from Ballymena, Northern Ireland to Canada after their marriage in 1881.

“If you weren’t born on a farm, you need to be born again,” I often heard my grandfather, who my cousins and I called PopPop, comment.

He served in France in World War I.

His parents were not church goers. He heard his brother in law Roy speak on John 5:24 at a street meeting. “I tell you the truth, those who listen to my message and believe in God who send me have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed from death into life.”

Years later PopPop wrote, “After I was converted a friend said to me, knowing that I was saved, “How do you know you are saved?” I said, “Well, something happened to me.” He said, “A lot of things happen to people, and yet they are not saved.” I said, “Well, I haven’t sworn since I was saved, and that was three weeks ago.” He said, “A lot of people have not sworn for a month, and yet they are not Christians.” “Well,” I said, “I read John 5:24 and believed it.” He said. “That’s good.

Andrew Telford wanted to know God. He jumped on a train for Chicago and the Moody Bible Institute. He arrived at the school, and told them he wanted to be a student.

“I’m sorry,” the secretary at the desk responded. “You have to apply to be a student here. There are papers to fill out.”

The president of the school at the time, James M. Gray, heard about Andrew Telford. Impressed with his initiative, he said, “We’ll make an exception. Andy will be a student and can wash dishes in the dining room to pay for his room and board.”

That’s a story I heard about my grandfather from Uncle Tommy. PopPop lived to be 102, spry and eager to drive himself to preach in churches until he was 95, so I have many firsthand memories.  He was a big part of my life until I was 42.

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