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  • Writer's pictureSylvia St. Cyr

Seeking God by Spending Time in Nature

Updated: Feb 15, 2023

When someone goes on a quest seeking God, searching for His council, wisdom, or voice, there are a few common places people look. Maybe they start in a book or do research online. Perhaps they step into a church or talk to a Pastor.

One place that people don’t often think to look, however, is in nature. This is where I feel incredibly close, perhaps the closest, to the Creator, Almighty God.

I’m not negating the fact that those other avenues are great. But if you are looking for something that reaches into your soul past your common understanding, step outside.

Let the heavens be glad, and the earth rejoice! Let the sea and everything in it shout his praise! Let the fields and their crops burst out with joy! Let the trees of the forest sing for joy.” – Psalm 96:11-12 NLT

As we step outside to breath the fresh air, there is a shift. When we walk through the forest, swim in a lake, or hike a rocky path, new life washes over us. It’s quite indescribable unless you’ve experienced this for yourself.

The first time I felt this closeness to God in nature was on a walk at Circle Square Bible Camp. I was taking a leadership course over a two week period and one of the days we were asked to go for a walk alone anywhere. I took a walk along a road that led away from the camp. Along this path on both sides were beautiful trees. I started to just talk aloud to God, and then I got silent and simply walked. A new peace washed over me and I felt the presence of God in a new way. Truly I could’ve stayed out there for hours.

This idea of feeling the power and presence of God in nature was brought once again to the forefront during my training for the Freedom Challenge last year. I committed to walking/hiking three days a week. I also had to find elevation, which meant I had to search for the hills throughout our prairie lands. The places I’ve found are stunning and I will continue to go there as often as I can. (Including the Pembina Valley, Birds Hill Park, and all the stunning trails throughout Whiteshell Provincial Park)

The incredible views, steam rising off the lake, and being fully encompassed by trees of every kind continued to bring life overflowing!

Then, down in the Grand Canyon as we walked along the dry riverbed, caressing rock that has been carved by the might of water and time, I felt intense gratitude. To behold the sight before me and be able to experience this view, in this time in history left me speechless.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and worn out today, first of all, share it with someone who cares, so they can pray for you.

Then, take a walk. Go ahead and try it! You don’t need to start by scaling a mountain cliff and end up sore for days on end. Just a walk, among the trees if you can. Then listen.

There is simply something majestic when you allow nature to surround you and awaken your imagination. Food actually tastes better after a walk, senses are heightened, and the Creator speaks when we embrace the beauty of all He has created.

Personally, I have seen the mountains surrounding Banff, driven through Yellowstone National park, hiked the Grand Canyon over four days, swam in the clearest blue water in the Florida vortex springs, and yet I’m sure I’ve just scratched the surface of the wonders God has created on this planet.

In our technological age, it’s so easy to find ourselves inside, searching up something online or watching TV. Now I do both of these regularly, and they have there place. But when technology locks us inside, it steals something very valuable from us all.

I have asked God to speak to me before, and I believe that He speaks to each of us often. We simply have to be willing, open, and quiet enough to hear. As one of my favourite books of all time puts it, God is a Voice in the Wind.

One of the best combinations I’ve found to really hear from God, is to read a thought-provoking chapter or book, and then go for a walk or sit outside. It’s in those moments that I not only feel God surround me, but hear Him whisper to my heart the beauty or lesson He’s trying to reveal!

If you’re properly dressed for the weather, nature can be enjoyed anytime of the year. It is here that I feel God close. Why not give it a try?

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