It was while in that business that Diehl was converted to Christ and began giving his testimony in churches and in personal columns and editorials. First as a lay preacher then ordained. I had heard the Gospel as a kid, was even moved to pray about my soul and salvation, Diehl said. But it was t until two Baptist soulwinners came to my door when I was 20 years old that I understood the claims of Christ on my life. There I knelt and prayed as a hopeless and helpless sinner for forgiveness and Jesus saved me! A half-dozen years later Diehl finally caught the fire of what it means to be a member of His body.[Gal.2:20] Diehl began preaching and pastoring as a bi-vocation in the early 1970s. His first church was a country Baptist Church near Malta Bend, Mo. of which he is ever grateful for its nurturing of a young preacher. Diehl took seminary training at Courts Redford School of Theology in Bolivar, Mo., before moving to Shawnee as a ministerial student at Oklahoma Baptist University and working for the daily newspaper as a writer and editor. Studies also include University of Oklahoma, Criswell Bible Institute and Miridian University -- but most lasting lessons have come from writing people features and doing ministry in various and different settings. Diehl, a fan of Mark Twain, has worked on newspapers big and small from the Sturgeon, Mo. Leader to the Daily Oklahoman; did pieces for the Oklahoma Baptist Messenger and served in Baptist churches in Missouri, Arkansas and Oklahoma. He left the pulpit ministry for a time and later became involved in Gideons International, serving in camp and state positions in Oklahoma, including Area Six director. Diehl and his wife, Janell, have four children, 10 grandchildren and three great grandchildren. Besides writing, he loves the out of doors, fishing, camping and playing Bluegrass and old-time country music.