“When Jamie was twenty-three years old, she flew from the United States to Tanzania with $2,000 from her savings account. She planned to stay until she ran out of money, at which point she would come home.
Jamie was overwhelmed by all of the need that she encountered, so she started praying that God would allow her to make a radical difference in one person’s life. After about six months, she met an eight-year-old girl at church who was carrying a baby on her back. Jamie learned that the baby’s mother was dying from AIDS and that she was too weak to care for him. Jamie began to buy formula for the little boy, Junio, to provide him with the nutrition he desperately needed. At the time, he was half the size of a healthy baby.
Jamie fell in love with baby Junio. She wondered if she was being foolish–a barely twenty-four-year-old, single, white American entertaining thoughts of adopting a baby. Besides, she didn’t even know if Tanzania allowed international adoptions. Eventually, she discovered that the country didn’t allow international adoptions; however, because she had lived there for over six months, she could establish residency.
Before Junio’s mom died from AIDS, she came to Jamie and said, “I have heard how you are taking care of my son, and I have never known such a love. I want to be saved.” Just before she died, she said, “I know that my son is taken care of, and I will see him in heaven someday.”
Jamie spent six months going through the adoption process and then five more months working with the American embassy to get Junio a visa. When she finally came home, she had been gone a year and a half.
Junio is now five years old, totally healthy, and HIV negative. When Junio’s mom was pregnant with him, she took a ‘morning-after’ pill late in her pregnancy in order to abort him. But instead it induced premature labor, and because Junio was so small, no bleeding occurred during his birth. Thus, he did not contract HIV from his mother. What was intended to end his life, God used to save it.
Since adopting Junio, Jamie has gotten married, had a little girl, and is moving back to Tanzania with her family to work with Wycliffe to translate the Bible for a group that has never heard it before.”
from Crazy Love by Francis Chan