Loved Ones Lost and Found, with God's Help

A pet turtle, a beloved dog and a birth mother—all thought to be lost. Until this week.

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Mysterious Ways blogger Adam Hunter

The Mysterious Ways staff hears a lot of unusual stories about people finding things they believed were lost forever. Three items jumped out at me from the news this week. As we’ve done before, I’ll open up the floor to you. With each of these stories, I'm asking what you think: Is it just good, or is it God?

1. In Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, the Almeida family was grieving the recent loss of their patriarch, Leonel. A constant tinkerer, Leonel often picked up old electronics and other items from the street, hoping to fix them. The whole second story of the house was filled with his various finds and half-finished projects.

According to Brazil’s, the family began cleaning out Leonel’s collection after his funeral. That’s when they found something inside a box for an old record player—a turtle.

Not just any turtle, but Manuela the turtle—a family pet that had gone missing for 30 years!

The family believed the turtle had wandered away when they’d remodeled their house ages ago. Somehow, the turtle had survived, and reappeared at a time when they could use a comforting friend.

2. The Associated Press reports that Mandi Smith of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, received an interesting voicemail last week—a call from Albuquerque, New Mexico, more than 1,200 miles away. “Mrs. Smith, this is the Española Valley Humane Society. We have your dog.”


Mandi’s cheweenie, her Chihuahua-Dachshund mix, had been missing for 18 months after escaping the back yard. Mandi had given up all hope of finding her. She had tried to move on, bringing two new dogs into her home. But she always wondered about Pooka. Could she really have been found?

She called back, and sure enough, it was Pooka. Mandi had her puppy implanted with a microchip just days before the dog disappeared, and the decision proved to be a wise one. Without the chip, Pooka may have been labeled a stray and put down.

But did more than just the chip save Pooka’s life? Where was she for 18 months? How did she make such a long journey? How did she stay safe? Unfortunately, Pooka has so far declined to comment.

3. Jenessa Simons of Roosevelt, Utah, had spent years looking for her birth parents. She didn’t have a lot to go on. Her birthdate: November 17, 1991. The hospital: Utah Valley Regional Medical Center. Her parents’ ages: Her father was born in May and her mother in June of 1975. The name they gave her was Whitney. Other than that, because of privacy laws, Janessa kept hitting dead ends.

Recent news stories have featured several people trying to go “viral” on Facebook, asking people to “Like” them in order to win a bet that could spare themselves chores, convince a girl to go out on a date, other trivial things. Jenessa decided to start her own campaign. She wrote everything she knew about her birth on a sign, took a photo, and posted it to Facebook, beseeching friends to spread it far and wide.

More than 70,000 people liked and shared the photo... and one of them shared it with the woman Jenessa had been searching for.

“She did send me a message on Facebook and said, ‘I think I’m your birth mother. I can’t believe it’s you. I’ve waited all this time’,” Jenessa told ABC 4 News Salt Lake City.

Hmm. Just imagine if Mysterious Ways got that many likes and shares on Facebook... how many lives could we touch? Hint. Hint.

Let us know what you think. Did God play a role in these happy endings? What glimpses of his power have you seen in your everyday life? Share your comments below or email our staff.

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