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I am very excited to have the opportunity to have a personal blog. I am a regular follower of several blogs, but this is the first time I have been the “blogger.” My initial goal is to blog at least twice a week and possibly more depending on the happenings here at AiG. I hope you will find the blogs I write to be informative, challenging, and personal, as that reflects my personality and speaking style. If you have ever heard me present, you know I speak rapidly and can pack a lot of information into one hour. Many times that is reflected in my writing style as well—I tend to be wordy! I depend a lot on editors who are not afraid to use the red pen. However, I hope writing blogs will train me to stay short, sweet, and to the point on the topics I write about.

This time of year is definitely my favorite. I will have to say I almost enjoy Thanksgiving more than Christmas. Thanksgiving is all about time with family and friends instead of gifts. Don’t get me wrong I like unwrapping presents, and it is a lot of fun to watch my daughter open her presents and hear her squeals of delight. But I get greater satisfaction sharing a meal and speaking with family that I haven’t seen in a while and don’t get that much chance to interact with outside of the holidays. I view it as a time of refreshment in the midst of our too-busy lives.

I think too it is a poignant reminder for our relationship with God. God doesn’t desire sacrifices; He desires an obedient heart. Saul learned this the hard way (1 Samuel 15:22). We can get so busy sacrificing our time and talents (e.g., teaching Sunday school, serving at the homeless shelter, directing the church Christmas play) that we forget to take the time to spend time with Him and talk with Him. We can’t be obedient if we don’t know God and His Word. One of my grandfather’s favorite hymns (and now mine too) was “In the Garden”:

I come to the garden alone, While the dew is still on the roses, And the voice I hear, falling on my ear, The Son of God discloses. And He walks with me, and He talks with me, And He tells me I am His own, And the joy we share as we tarry there, None other has ever known.
May you take time today and every day to walk and talk with God, read His Word, and be refreshed in your relationship with Him.

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