I love to hike in the summer months with my family. On one trip to Utah, we hiked a slot canyon. Slot canyons are narrow gorges with sheer rock walls on either side. 

As we walked into the canyon, trees and shrubs disappeared and beautiful sandstone rock, sculpted by water began to rise higher and higher above our heads. Soon we were shaded from the heat of the rising sun and alone in the quietness of spectacular surroundings, apart from the odd lizard that scurried across the sandy floor. 

“My God is my rock,” is declared by many people in the Bible. David is one of them, but Hannah is too. That surprised me. Hannah was, after all, an ordinary woman desperate to get pregnant. Why did she see God as her Rock, and not her Shepherd, the Creator God, or any of the other names for God?

As we went further into the canyon the path got narrower, the rock became more magnificent, and I began to understand why Hannah and David called God their Rock.

A place of safety to renew your strength

“My God is my rock, in whom I find protection,” said David in 2 Samuel 22:3.

It makes sense that David needed God’s protection. He was a warrior who fought many battles. A lot of the time, David was on the run from his enemies, particularly Saul. He needed God to shelter him from those who pursued him and wanted to kill him. 

David knew that a cave in the rock allowed him to hide and rest. The places where David hid were called “strongholds.” They allowed him to renew his strength.

David would have loved the slot canyon in which we walked. Protected by sandstone walls on three sides, only one narrow entrance needed to be guarded. It would be impossible for him to be successfully attacked. I can imagine him and his men taking turns sleeping on the sandy floor while a few kept watch.

David also knew that God was like the impenetrable walls of rock that protected him and his men. David could turn to God and trust him to keep his life safe. 

God is your hiding place too. Whatever you need protection from, you can run to God your Rock and know that he provides a solid wall of defense. When you place your hope in God, he will renew your strength. 

Fill in the words from Psalm 4 with your own prayer:

Answer me when I call to you, my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer:_______________________________________________________________________. In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety.

A place to find peace

Hannah tells us: “there is no Rock like our God.”

Hannah was not a warrior although she felt like she was in a battle. Hannah knew what it was like to be attacked verbally. Her rival Penninah provoked Hannah mercilessly, bombarding Hannah with jibes about her barrenness when Penninah could proudly proclaim she was able to get pregnant.

Yet, Hannah knew God would be her refuge in her personal pain. So distressed she couldn’t eat. So broken-hearted she couldn’t stop crying. Hannah went to God and poured out her heartache. She knew that with God she could find peace.

Hannah understood her powerlessness in the situation but she also knew the magnificence and magnitude of God and his power.

The contrast between ourselves and God, between ourselves and a slot canyon, is what makes God, and the rock, so awe-inspiring. 

A slot canyon can make you feel small in comparison to the Rock that rose hundreds of feet above our heads made us feel small. Huge, immovable boulders that stood in our way and we had to scramble up, made us feel vulnerable with the risk of grazing bare legs and falling. 

It’s the same with God. He is magnificent, towering over us. We are like grasshoppers compared to him, says Isaiah 40:22. Yet, even though we are small and vulnerable, our God is completely dependable, trustworthy, and as solid as rock. 

God our Rock, said Hannah, “protectively cares for his faithful friends, step by step.”

In your pain, God is your Rock too, the one you can turn to for peace of mind and heart.

What request do you have for God your Rock? Make it now and then as Eli said to Hannah: “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant you what you have asked of him.”

By the time we emerged from the slot canyon, the sun high in the sky beat down on our heads. It was enough to make us want to run back and stay hidden in the cool of the rock canyon.

Use the prayer to praise God for being rock solid. Commit to running and remaining in him when life becomes too much.


  • Thank you Rachel, for sharing. I always get so much out from your articles, which helps me understand God’s character so well.

  • Praise God for His Beauty and Almighty Power!!!!
    Thank you, Rachel, for sharing these beautiful photos with us!
    Thank you for the Scripture and prayers and for your inspiring words that you shared. He is our Rock and our Salvation!

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