Jeff Morgan has been flyfishing the Oregon Cascades and Yellowstone since float tubes were actually inner-tubes! He has tied professionally for over 25 years, and written about fly fishing for outlets as diverse as the Scottsbluff Star-Herald, Westfly.com, and Fly Fisherman magazine. When not writing and tying, he loves to bird hunt to replenish his stocks of materials. Formerly a history and political science professor at a teachers college in Nebraska, Jeff now works as an investment advisor helping educators with their retirement and estate planning.
I was born in Seattle, April 1957. My folks met while students at U of W and married in 1955. My mom was a nurse. My dad had degrees in forestry and mechanical engineering and worked in the construction industry. He loved the outdoors and often took my brother and I out fishing when we were younger. Every outing with him was like a field trip in forestry where he would show us how to identify trees, how to calculate a tree’s height from the ground, share about different types of moss and which lichens or mushrooms are edible.
But as I was growing up he and I got farther and farther apart. He and my mom eventually divorced in 1974 when I was a junior in high school. He was a pretty heavy drinker and that kind of spilled over into my own life in high school. Still, his influence on me for a love of God’s creation was huge.
I came to Christ at age 20 after a real rebellious adolescence. Several people had been trying to speak the truth and peace of Christ into my life but I refused to listen for a long time. I thought I had it all figured out. And my dad had married a woman he met at work, then he moved away to Utah, then to Alaska, so he and I pretty much lost touch. I hadn’t seen or heard from him since about 1980. He missed my wedding in 1981. Still, I prayed for him almost every day.
My conversion happened in September of 1977 as I watched the series “Jesus of Nazareth” on TV and I was convinced and convicted of the fact that the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ applied to me. I was discipled by a retired Baptist Pastor while living in Hillsboro, OR. I became involved in a little Baptist church in Hillsboro and met my wife Debi there. I realized early in my life in Christ how saved I really was and knew that God was calling me to give Him everything. I served as a Deacon and other leadership positions in various churches.
In 2002 I was asked to serve at Calvary Chapel Fellowship in St. Helens as interim pastor. They decided to keep me. One day in 2013 I got a call out of the blue from my dad. He was now divorced and had moved to Longview WA and was working for Cowlitz county. He asked me if I had ever read the book “Peace with God” by Billy Graham. I told him I hadn’t but I was sure I knew what the message of the book was! After not seeing him for over 20 years, he asked me to come over and talk to him about it. The next day I spent the afternoon with him. After catching up, I was able to explain the gospel to him and that afternoon I had the privilege of praying with my dad as he received Jesus as his savior. That was a good day.
Debi and I live in St. Helens and have 2 grown sons and 5 grandchildren. Both of them love the Lord with all their hearts. Our oldest son is pastor of the Christ the King church in Blaine, WA. Our youngest lives in Portland, and is a senior software developer and serves at the Door of Hope church in Portland.
I thank you guys for the invitation to share next year. I look forward to getting to hang out with all you fellas.