I believe in miracles. Reshma Begum, Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, and Michelle Knight do too.

“I never thought of coming back alive,” said Reshma Begum after she was rescued from the rubble of the collapsed building in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The 19-year-old seamstress started working at one of the factories on the second floor of the eight-story RanaPlaza on April 2. She earned 4,700 takas ($60) a month.

On April 24 co-workers told her there were cracks in the building but her bosses told her the building was safe. Shortly after arriving at work the building crumbled. She survived in a totally darkened room for 17 days on some water and four packets of cookies she foraged from knapsacks of others who died.

The military ended their gruesome task two days ago after removing 1127 corpses from the building. Reshma’s rescue was a ray of hope in the midst of all the horror and grief. The fact that she was spared does not lessen the grief and pain that others suffered but it does give evidence that unexpected and surprising things can and do happen. When they do occur we call them miracles.

Although Amanda Berry had been missing for a decade, since age 16, her unsolved case was widely remembered in Cleveland, Ohio. A 911 emergency call last week resulted in her being found. The police responded and found her holding a child in her arms on the porch of a house on Seymour Avenue. The first officer on the scene was “overwhelmed” to know that she was still alive.

After entering the house Officer Anthony Espada found two other women who had been held captive for ten years. One of the women identified herself as Georgina DeJesus who had disappeared in 2004 in a case that baffled police and received wide media attention. At that moment he was overcome with emotion. He said, “It was like one bombshell after another.”

The mother of Michelle Knight, the other rescued woman, said she had never stopped looking for her daughter. Gina DeJesus’ father never doubted that his daughter was still alive. “I knew she needed me and I never gave up,” he said. Her aunt, Sandra Ruiz, thanked everyone who had supported the family over the years.

Miracles like the rescue of Reshma, Amanda, Michelle, and Gina are not commonplace. But they do occur. While these positive outcomes do not diminish the hurt and loss that many experience, these stories remind us that nothing is impossible with God. And miracles come in all sizes.

Jamie Jenkins