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FARMINGTON — Steven Campbell believes a relationship with God is crucial, and nurturing that connection is at the center of the Farmington author's four books.

It's also the focus of the former Blanco pastor's latest book, "Life in God's Garden." Campbell will sign copies of the book on Friday at Hastings in Farmington.

Campbell began writing a few years ago after a traveling minister "prophesied over me that I would be writing a book” to detail Christian rights, he said.

"When he gave that prophesy, I had no idea what he meant," Campbell said.

He said portions of the book came to him in the evening. These notes became "The Christian's Bill of Rights," a 31-day devotional released in 2012 that covers topics like the right to speak to God and the right to be heard.

Since then, Campbell has written a book every year, including  "I Am Born Again, Now What?: An Invitation to Grow in Christ" and "Well Done Good and Faithful Servant: Fulfilling Your Purpose in the Harvest."

His most recent book centers on the biblical Garden of Eden. Inspiration stemmed from a discussion he had with his son about the garden, Campbell said.

Christie DeWees, the pastor at World Harvest Center in Farmington, wrote the introduction to Campbell's book. She said Campbell distinguishes himself as an author because he "understands God's love" and "is able to define that for people."

She has read all four books of Campbell's books and said the latest one takes a deeper perspective.

"He brings people into the book," she said.

The book applies the principles of the Garden of Eden story to modern life. God was with Adam and Eve in the garden, Campbell said, but he was forced to kick them out of the garden when they sinned. Still, God "never left them," Campbell noted.

"The whole purpose of the Garden of Eden really is getting to know God,” he said.

In researching the book, Campbell said he also became more familiar with the biblical story.

"I’d never realized how much time it was between when God created man and when he created woman," he said.

Campbell explained that before God created Eve, he brought all the animals to Adam, who watched over them and named them. He said that process had to have taken at least a year.

God also used that time to get to know Adam, Campbell said. Then, when it came time for God to create a woman, he put Adam into a deep sleep, according to the Bible. Campbell said the Bible does not say how long Adam was asleep, but he believes God took that time to get to know Eve.

“God always wants us to know him first and foremost,” he said.

Hannah Grover covers Aztec and Bloomfield, as well as general news, for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652.

If you go

What: Steven Campbell's book signing for "Life in God's Garden"

When: 6 to 8 p.m. Friday

Where: Hastings, 3020 E. 20th St.

Cost: $9.90 per book

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