28-5-1917 — 29-7-2011
Notes from Sam Jacot, Jr.
Brother Grant was born May 29th. 1917, in the town of Innisvale, Alberta, Canada. His early years were spent on a family farm. He was one of the eleven children of Gilbert and Mary Grant.
In his youth, brother Leslie was extremely shy. He would often hide himself when company came to his family home. In view of his shyness, one can imagine the feelings he had when, attending a gospel service with his parents, he was impressed that one day he too, would be standing in front of others preaching, even though (at that time) he was not saved.
Brother Grant was brought to the Lord as his Saviour at the age of 17, through the exercise of a near-drowning experience. His early adult years were spent in working for an optical firm, where he continued until the age of 25. At that time he was called of the Lord to full-time service in the Gospel. He had been under exercise about service on a full-time basis through contact with a cousin who was in the Lord's work. He has often remarked that the Lord thrust him out into the work, and his 'commendation' was from the Lord Himself, very similar to what we read in Gal. 1:15-16. After his calling he spent much time in the reading and study of the Word, and in travelling among the farmers by bicycle in the Peace River country of Northern Alberta. During that time he lived in a trapper's cabin, while continuing the Gospel effort among the local population. Some of the fruit of labour from those years was the assembly in Westlock, Alberta.
Though brother Leslie confined most of his work to the Canadian provinces, he did come to the U.S.A. periodically and would speak in the Gospel at conferences in St. Maries, Idaho, Minneapolis, Minnesota and elsewhere. During those years he made acquaintances with others active in Gospel work, as Jerry Davies, Bro. Leonards and Don Johnson. On January 8th. 1948, Frances Smiley from Staples, Minnesota, and Leslie were united in marriage. They made their home in Westlock, Alberta, where they started a family that eventually consisted of two sons and seven daughters.
During this time he continued in the ministry God had given him, and also undertook carpentry, building his own home at Westlock, and a good part of the meeting hall in Edmonton. He felt his activity in practical matters gave some needed perspective to his spiritual labours.
Though very busy he made it a practice to write comments on his morning readings, (a practice he still follows); these books in turn would become the basis for several of the books he has written [e.g. Romans and Hebrews] on spiritual truths which have been published. He is a frequent contributor to various current periodicals, Bible study lessons and calendar readings, while maintaining an active travel schedule among the assemblies with which he has practical links of fellowship.
Brother Leslie, sister Frances and the children still at home, moved to Seattle, Washington in 1974. They have remained in the Seattle area [until his home-call in 2011], with many of the children and their spouses residing near.
As is true of all of us, he was especially helped by several brethren now gone home to be with the Lord. He mentions bros. Dewar, Rogers, Tomkinson and Paulsen. Many others also, not identified here but known to the Lord, have been a mutual encouragement through the years.
Our brother has been a great help in the local assembly, both by example (not lording it over the Lord's heritage) and by precept, with sound teaching and exhortation. He remains very modest, and likely would prefer that nothing of his past be known, so that the excellency of Christ would be everything. He is also a gifted poetry writer and many of his poems are in print.
The compiler of these notes was told by brother Leslie that a great ambition of his was to be a career golfer. That came to an end when he was converted. He sustained a severe accident when a car in which he was travelling over a bridge, was involved in a collision and he was thrown out from the passenger seat on to the road. He was struck by a passing car and severely injured. The Lord healed him so that he could carry on the work that He had commissioned him to do.
Brother Leslie's hymn in 'Spiritual Songs' is no. 260. It breathes the spirit of adoration in relation to the perfect pathway of our Lord Jesus Christ.