Posted on: July 20th, 2009 by Amy Grant 26 Comments

Where do I begin describing the myriad of thoughts and impressions that followed me home from Africa…?

I'll begin with a few of the indelible pictures in my mind:

the laughter of Archbishop and Mrs. Desmund Tutu….watching him dance on a small stage after dinner at The One and Only Hotel in Cape Town.,,,laughter and joy.

Drinking hot coffee with hot milk almost every morning before the sun came up…watching the sunrise…reconnecting with the One who made it.

Driving through sugar cane fields on a rich red dirt road. then leaving the vehicle and starting the climb up to Damale's house (did I spell that right?) Sitting in her mud hut with a thatched roof (the whole structure smaller than my kitchen) as her welcomed guests. 

I cannot begin to say all of the ways that I am changed, expanded, shrunken…
I'm trying to internalize the experience before I try and articulate its impact so that I don't scatter the precious "smoke signals" that my heart is trying so desperately to read.P7060227
  • Lisa

    wow that is amazing you had a great trip wow you rock girl so happy you got to do this its great from Lisa

  • Amelia McNeilly

    Thanks for sharing, Amy! Look forward to hearing more about it later. It is amazing how God uses such experiences to reveal Himself and teach us about love in ways that He never has before.

  • dianacc

    I have heard from other people that Africa touched them the same way-closer to God-what an amazing experience for your kids!
    Did you have a connection with the family you visited?

  • Zoe W

    Amy I am so glad that you and yours had such a special time. Thank you for sharing…the photos of the trip are really lovely. I particularly like the one where you met the child you and Vince Sponsor….how’s about comin’ to England!! Big hugs

  • Tracey (real estate girl)

    I just stumbled on your blog and am so glad I did! Sounds like you had an amazing time in Africa!

  • Leigh Gang

    The last part you just wrote sounds like a great song for you.

  • Laura

    Love this picture! The kids all look so beautiful and happy. Matt is smiling and he’s gorgeous! Can’t wait to hear more.

  • copperhead

    Your pictures of Africa are beautiful! Usually when one thinks of Africa, they don’t think of ‘greenery’, but there seems to be a lot of it in the pics you provided. It’s gorgeous! What an experience for you! I love nature and going out in it…brings one so much closer to God. Love the pic of your family with your new friends from Africa. Your daughter at the opposite end of the couch from you looks JUST like you! 😉

  • Paul Martin

    Thank you so much for sharing. I am headed to Ethiopia in November. I am excited about how God is going to work in my life.

  • Amy Autumn Brooker

    What a great experience! Can’t wait to hear more!

  • Elisabeth Corcoran

    Thank you for sharing…I’ve been blogging about my trip to Liberia last month here:

  • Suzanne Schaffer

    What an incredible experience for you and for your children. Glad you had time to reflect and connect with God.

  • Mary Kean

    Oh Amy:
    You are right – some times stand you still on the inside.
    God can wreck us with smoke signals too. I’m glad he sent you that precious Damale. She may not know about you the way we do here – that you are an accomplished compasionate singer/songwriter – pretty famous. But I bet she’s feel’en the same way you are. I bet she cried a tear or two over you too. You guys look like two crackerjacks. Um Um Um – Jesus works.
    We had a sunset about like your sunrise here in Texas. We went about 40 days without rain with temps around 100 and indexes far above that. My son mentioned – it must be as hot as Africa. Maybe it takes that kind of heat to produce those works of art. The sunset was so beautiful – had to run out the front door and back door to see it all. I wonder if it was the same one, Amy – only a sunrise for you. I’m not that educated about clouds and stuff – so don’t tell me if I’m wrong…
    Later Alligator. I’m happy for all you guys who made the trip. Tell Vince he better put that camera down and get in the pic next time!

  • Beth Matheson

    A couple days before you left, we got back from taking a group of teens to Honduras. It takes a while after coming home to wrap your mind and heart around “normal” life, doesn’t it? Every time we go somewhere, I come back richer and broken and healed. I’m so glad you were able to share such a world-shifting experience with your kids.

  • Jen

    Just to clarify — Vince was only on the first part of the trip (South Africa) and did not go to Uganda for the Compassion part of the trip because of work commitments he had in the States.

  • Jim Allen

    What joy it is to read what you write about your experiences in Africa; you’re meeting all those wonderful people that will forever change the way you look at them, and fell in love with the beauty that is within them. Savor everything about that experience you can remember, and after you have relieved it within yourself so it does not fade from your memory, then share all that you can with us so we may enjoy your experiences as you again remember, and then relate them to us.
    So happy you are again safely home, and I know you family grew closer with everything that you all shared together.
    God bless you Amy Grant.
    Jim Allen

  • Will Ruha

    Amy, Congratulations on your odyssey of compassion & Agape. I apologize for this intrusion, but as I know Vince is a passionate golfer, I have a song I’d like him to consider as a birthday present to Arnold Palmer who will be 80 on Sept. 10. I’m a professional songwriter & Vince and you can view my song on the Arnold Palmer Memory Book page of the U.S.G.A. website. Vince will get a kick out of it. Please have a view & ask Vince to check it out. Thanks & God’s blessings to you & Vince. – Kindest regards, Will

  • Kelly H-Y

    The pictures are gorgeous … I can’t wait to hear more! Sounds like a phenomenal trip.

  • Tammy Garrett

    The emotions you experienced coming home from Africa are very familiar to me! My family is part of a small group building an orphanage and community feeding center in Ghana, West Africa. There are simply no words to describe it…the people there have so much less than us materially, but are richer than us in so many ways!! I’m still searching for the words to adequately portray our experiences this past March when we took our children for the first time!

  • Michelle Ferguson

    I enjoyed reading some of your initial thoughts/impressions about your time in Africa. I haven’t been to Africa (yet) but love to read stories from people as they intersect new cultures and engage in the process of reconciling it with their own.
    I will do this soon as my husband and I move back to America, and my foremost prayer continues to be that I wouldn’t leave unchanged.

  • Carolyn

    Amy: What a great pleasure to see you in Africa…….I have an old college friend who lives there, with her husband and family, working to help their neighbors with fair market trade, dealing with HIV/AIDS, poverty, and spiritual hunger. Her website is: It might be something you’d be interested in. Blessings to you as you assimilate all that you took in on your trip!

  • Roy

    Wow, Amy Grant in South Africa, my beloved country I was born and spent my childhood at, that’s so great. South Africa and the United States are the two best countries in the world.

  • Mozie

    Perhaps next time you come to South Africa you’ll do a concert? [beg] [beg] :)

  • Juan Carlos Berrios

    It’s great to see you in Africa, Amy!
    May our King of the Universe continue opening doors for you.


    Hello Amy
    I am Werley from Brazil…..for years you have a great public here on this country…and when I sow you in Africa…I imagine how it would be great have your presence here in Brazil….
    Come on…Michael W. Smith came here 2 or 3 times…what about you?
    The brazilian people is waiting for years to see a great show..all generations that grouw up with you …
    In 2006 I was near Mobile AL US..waiting for your show…it was canceled… 2009 i had visited your star in hollywood during the oscar cerimony…again….no show to sse you….so in 2 times I can not see you in States…now it is your turn..come on to Brazil

  • Henrique

    You lived one of those experiences in holy soil, like Moses had him in the desert. And, God spoke deeply in your heart. Thanks for sharing such precious moment with us. God gave you the opportunity to see the world like He see through His eyes. You saw a little piece of Africa. I pray God will show you more from others parts of the world.



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