Deep Canyon Experiences with Ellie Holcomb

8 Ways to See God through Your Deepest Valleys

Contemporary Christian music-folk singer and songwriter Ellie Holcomb joined Family Life Radio in a conversation with words to remind you of the ever-present love and strength of God available to you. Ellie shares eight ways to experience God through your darkest valleys.

Venturing through life’s deep canyons can often feel like a solitary journey, shadowed by towering walls of struggles and uncertainties. But what if these canyons were not just paths of trials but also landscapes where you can experience the presence of God.

“I got to visit the Grand Canyon for the first time in my life, just a couple years ago,” Ellie begins. “I’ll never forget it. It was very epic. We camped on the northern realm of the canyon. We went down into the Grand Canyon and wrapped the Colorado River and spent the night on riverbank.”

1. God in the Beauty around You

“I see [God] so much in creation,” Ellie shares.

When you’re wrestling with doubts or fears, take a moment to step outside. Look up at the stars, feel the breeze, watch the sunrise. In these simple yet magnificent aspects of creation, you can find reminders of God’s presence and His majesty.

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Just as Ellie finds comfort in the night sky, you too can find peace in the natural beauty that surrounds you.

2. The Brightest Stars in Your Darkest Nights

Ellie says, “Before we went to sleep, the guide said, ‘Just so you know tonight, when you go to sleep, this is going to be the darkest place that you will ever be because you’re over a mile into the surface of the earth. There’s no ambient light around. But because it is so dark, the stars are going to shine brighter than they’ve ever shown before and they’re going to appear closer.’ I woke up in the middle of that dark place and experienced the stars. It was like they were right in front of my face. And that is what I have experienced of God’s love – even in the darkest places, the light is always stronger.”

When life feels overwhelming, remember that God’s light is most visible in darkness.

What a beautiful image of God’s love shining through during your darkest moments. His love and grace become your guiding stars.

3. Resilience through Life’s Disasters

“The Grand Canyon is a story of disaster upon disaster,” Ellie shares about what she learned from the guide. “He’s like, ‘Look, that’s a landside; that’s a mudslide; that a drought; that was a volcano.’ And there’s this huge divide.”

Despite its history of disasters, the Grand Canyon remains a breathtaking sight.

Ellie Holcomb

Ellie continues, “I’m down there looking up at the walls of the Grand Canyon, and I’m like, well, especially after for the past couple of years that we’ve all been through, this just actually looks like a picture of a human heart. We all know what it is to breathe, to be broken, and we all know what it is to have our hearts ache and split wide open.”

Your heart, marked by its own trials and tribulations, holds a unique beauty shaped by resilience and God’s unending love.

“There is a current of God’s love that runs deeper than our deepest ache or pain that will carry us, if we’ll only let it and stop clinging to the walls. It will carry us back to a place where we are reminded that even in our most broken pit of the valley places, we are beloved. We are held, and we belong to love and to each other.”

4. God’s Presence in Your Lowest Moments

Ellie beautifully points out, “Water always moves to the lowest place. And so does God.” God is with you, especially in your lowest, most challenging times. Just as water naturally flows into the deepest crevices, God’s grace and love reach you wherever you are, no matter how far you feel you’ve fallen.

5. The Echo of Worship in Your Valleys

“When you sing in a valley, your voice is multiplied,” Ellie explains. “Your voice echoes. It actually echoes off of every single broken piece of the wall that got you into that pit.”

In your deepest valleys, when you choose to worship, your faith echoes off every challenge and struggle you’ve faced. Even amid pain, your worship can be a powerful witness to God’s enduring presence in your life.

And it’s in these moments of vulnerability that your worship carries a most wholehearted significance, echoing off the walls of your experiences.

6. Love Overcomes Suffering

Ellie powerfully states, “The suffering never has the final word; love does.”

In times of trouble, it’s easy to feel like your suffering is endless. But remember, as a follower of Christ, you are anchored in a love that triumphs over all pain and sorrow.

Romans 8:37 reminds us, “In all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us” (NIV).

Your story doesn’t end with suffering; it’s enveloped in God’s unfailing love.

7. An Invitation to Sing in Your Pain

Ellie invites you to find your voice in the midst of your struggles. “it’s an invitation for people to sing and to know that even in their deepest places of pain that there is a God who sings over them and who delight in them,” she says.

Singing in your pain isn’t about denying your struggles, but instead it’s about acknowledging them and still choosing to praise God. It’s a declaration that even in hardship, you trust in God’s goodness and love.

8. You Give God Delight

Ellie says, “I’m so grateful that we can come as we are with our lament, our grief and our questions … and be accepted.”

No matter how lonely or broken you feel, you are a source of joy to God. He delights in you, not for what you do or achieve, but simply because you are His. Zephaniah 3:17 affirms this, saying, “The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in His love, He will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing” (NIV).

In every step of your journey, through every canyon and valley, you are not alone. You are held, loved and guided by a God whose love is as vast as the night sky, as deep as the Grand Canyon and as persistent as a river carving its way through the hardest of rocks. Keep walking, keep singing and keep looking up. For in every step, God is with you.

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