It feels like a miscarriage. I had that happen once.
It's not the worst pain in the world; it's not the worst tragedy. It's just so disappointing and sad.
Probably the hardest part is knowing that James' future is so uncertain. He can stay at the baby home until he is five; then he will have to transfer to a children's home. Some of them are pretty nice places. Some of them. And then what happens when he is 18? What happens to any orphan when they are 18? So I pray for a family for him.
I pray that God works in the hearts of Tanzanians to turn them to adoption. There are some, of course, who are willing to brave the social stigma of having an adopted child. But only a precious few.
And I pray that God changes the hearts of those who have the power to change adoption laws in this country. In the last years, the laws have gotten more restrictive, not less. Last year, the law was changed to say that any foreigner has to live in this country for three years before they can apply to adopt a child. And just recently, new regulations have been put in place that restrict the number of adopted children in a family to three.
And that is why we cannot bring home James. And not only James, but we will not ever be able to adopt in Tanzania again.
Of course, there are millions of children in other countries who need families, and we will be praying about that and considering our options. But how sad, how completely sad, that in a country of 3 million orphans--a country we love and cherish--that we cannot give at least one more child a chance at love.
There are many, many things that have happened in these past months, or even these past five years of our adoption journey, that could make a person very bitter and cynical. But I am choosing to remember that God is sovereign even over governments and the hearts of men. His plans are greater than mine.