Culture -

A place where I hear God speak —

By Nate Karnes

The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”

Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.        – 1 Kings 19:11-12 (NLT)


I encourage you to take five minutes and go outside. You can go for a walk, sit in silence or some combination – the point is to go outside and just BE there. No phone, no distractions and no agenda … just listen for the Lord.


One of the things my parents instilled in me from an early age was a love of the outdoors. They did this specifically through camping trips. Many of my best childhood memories are usually affiliated somehow with a trip to the woods, the beach or the mountains. We would play, explore, eat, sleep and “be” outside. I cherish those memories and am having a blast creating more of those types of memories with my own children. I love to be outside, even if it’s a cup of coffee on the deck in the morning, a short walk around the property with my wife after dinner, or a few days on a fishing trip. I like to be in the “wilderness.”


In his book, “Leap Over A Wall,” Eugene Peterson says:


“When we’re in the wilderness we aren’t in control, we have no assignment, no appointments to keep. Stay alert, stay alive – that’s it. When we’re in the wilderness we commonly feel our lives simplifying and deepening. Many people, after a few days in the wilderness (sometimes after only a few hours), feel themselves to be more themselves, uncluttered and spontaneous. Very often, even though otherwise unaccustomed to it, they say the name God. There’s something wonderfully attractive about wilderness.”


I believe time spent in the wilderness is good for us. Our senses sharpen, our spirits quicken and oftentimes we are able to perceive the Holy. In the wilderness, we find that the noise that is so constant and loud in our hearts finally fades, and we hear the whisper of God.


Listen for the whisper today!


CIY2017-Color-54.jpgNate Karnes is a MOVE program director for Christ In Youth. His email is