Please disable your Ad Blocker to better interact with this website.

Connect with us

Faith

Missionary Tells Harrowing Tale of Prison Time He and His Wife Spent in Venezuela

This horrific story is not without an incredible ending.

Published

on

‘It was as close to hell as you can imagine,’ said Josh, taking a deep breath. ‘We’re lucky to have made it out alive. When I first got there I was terrified and became very ill.

‘They threw me in a tiny cell barely big enough to fit a bunk bed in with no toilet. I had to crap on newspaper on the floor and pee in a bottle, the stench was unbearable.

‘In the first six months I dropped 60lb in weight, I had bronchitis, scabies, kidney stones and hemorrhoids and the only medical attention I was given was a shot of pain killers.

‘I was in constant pain in my stomach and one of my teeth split in two. I had agonizing tooth ache for three months and didn’t once see a dentist or receive medication.’

Despite the devastated economy in Venezuela, the textbook example of the many failures of a Marxist economy, American leftists still laud the “people’s revolution” in the socialist regime and continue to push the same ideology up North.

“Cognitive dissonance” doesn’t even come close.

And in true Marxist fashion, the Chavez-founded, Maduro-succeeded regime has hosted a slew of political prisoners subject to brutal conditions and even torture over the years.

take our poll - story continues below

Should President Trump declare a national emergency to build the wall?

  • Should President Trump declare a national emergency to build the wall?  

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Completing this poll grants you access to Flag And Cross updates free of charge. You may opt out at anytime. You also agree to this site's Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Trending: CONFIRMED: Nigerian Brothers Admit Smollett Paid Them to Stage ‘Hate Crime’ [Details]

See, because socialism is so great, you have to create a culture of fear, intimidation, and corruption just to maintain it!

Josh Holt is a 26-year-old Mormon missionary from Riverton, Utah, who was recently released from the notorious El Helicoide prison in Caracas where he was held on espionage charges.

Holt is not a spy, but just a regular American who met a beautiful Mormon girl, Thamy, online in 2016. They fell in love, as often happens in the new millennium, and Holt soon traveled to Venezuela where he proposed to and married Thamy. He remained in Venezuela with his new bride as they awaited Thamy’s visa.

That was when their nightmare began. Venezuelan police raided Thamy’s apartment, accused the duo of “weapons stockpiling”, and dragged them off to prison.

There, he was detained in squalor, defecating on newspaper and being subject to dehumanizing psychological torture like fake staged executions and torture.

Holt recently gave his account to Daily Mail:

‘It was as close to hell as you can imagine,’ said Josh, taking a deep breath. ‘We’re lucky to have made it out alive. When I first got there I was terrified and became very ill.

‘They threw me in a tiny cell barely big enough to fit a bunk bed in with no toilet. I had to crap on newspaper on the floor and pee in a bottle, the stench was unbearable.

‘In the first six months I dropped 60lb in weight, I had bronchitis, scabies, kidney stones and hemorrhoids and the only medical attention I was given was a shot of pain killers.

‘I was in constant pain in my stomach and one of my teeth split in two. I had agonizing tooth ache for three months and didn’t once see a dentist or receive medication.’

His wife, Thamy, was sickeningly subject to even more brutality, in the form of physical torture and constant interrogations. She gave her emotional account:

Tightly clasping Josh’s hand and breaking down in tears, Thamy recalled: ‘They covered my eyes, wrapped my arms in newspaper and electrocuted me with a taser, and they put the ends of my fingers in a pencil sharpener. I was so scared.

‘They wanted me to sign a confession that Josh was part of an espionage plot, that he led a CIA team sent to undermine the Venezuelan government, that he had killed people. I just cried and refused.’

This horrific story is not without an incredible ending. After two years in detainment, the couple, with the help of Trump administration senior officials, were finally released and escorted together to the airport, where they flew back home with Thamy’s two small daughters. They met with the President last week before being reunited with family.

The best part came upon their return to Utah, where friends and family were overjoyed to meet them and gave them a truly American welcome:

Two days later Holt landed back home in Salt Lake City, Utah, and was greeted by a large crowd of family and friends, some holding signs in English and Spanish saying ‘We never gave up’ and Let Freedom Ring’.

Holt’s grandmother, Malinda, draped an American flag around her grandson’s shoulders during the emotional homecoming as the crowd sang the national anthem.

For Holt, being back home on US soil surrounded by his family as a free man has still yet to sink in.

Let freedom ring, indeed.

 

Join the conversation!

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, vulgarity, profanity, all caps, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain a courteous and useful public environment where we can engage in reasonable discourse.

Faith

God’s Incredible Truth About Special Needs Adoption

Published

on

By

Making room in your home, and in your heart, for a child who is not biologically yours is an amazing reflection of God’s grace and adoption of sinners, but it is not without its hardships and struggles.

Adopting a child with special needs can increase the tension in an already difficult process, and so many of these precious children end up without families because of what their care would entail.

When God adopted us into His kingdom, however, he didn’t hesitate for our flaws and imperfections, and the adoptive family who mirrors this finds such an immense reward.

take our poll - story continues below

Should President Trump declare a national emergency to build the wall?

  • Should President Trump declare a national emergency to build the wall?  

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Completing this poll grants you access to Flag And Cross updates free of charge. You may opt out at anytime. You also agree to this site's Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

In a heartwarming piece for Relevant Magazine, author Scarlet Hiltibidal shares her amazing experience with adopting a little girl from China with special needs and the lessons God taught her through it all.

Ya Zhu was almost four, but she couldn’t walk and wasn’t potty trained. There were concerns about her cognitive development.

Many doctors and specialists said we ought to proceed with ‘great hesitation.’ One told us not to move forward at all. They all agreed there must be something else very wrong with Ya Zhu because her delays were so significant.

But my husband and I managed to stay mostly peaceful. We didn’t know if Ya Zhu would heal and recover. We didn’t know how hard things would be. We didn’t know if she’d be a joyful child, but we decided to rename her ‘Joy.’ We hoped and prayed adopting her would give her hope and a future.

While embarking on the journey of adoption and knowing full well you are in for a challenge can surely cause a healthy degree of apprehension, Hiltibidal says she and her husband, by God’s grace, were able to proceed without an ounce of fear in their hearts.

God was leading us to Joy, and He was with us. He had come through in so many ways: checks from strangers to cover adoption fees at exactly the right time, comforting words from the Bible, people who moved our anxious hearts toward rest, doors opening and closing and freelance jobs falling out of the sky exactly as our adoption agency was asking for another payment. God was with us. He kept proving He was in the process and supporting it and leading it. We weren’t afraid.

In a moment of raw, authentic honesty, Hiltibidal reveals that it wasn’t until she actually met her new daughter that fear crept in.

We were convinced Joy would never walk, never learn, never leave diapers. I wondered if our family would ever laugh again. If we’d ever have an easy Saturday at the park. I wondered how much wheelchairs cost and what my other children would miss out on because of this decision we’d made.

But right there, in the middle of the scariest moment of the entire process, God reached down and touched Hiltibidal’s heart to remind her of one of His deepest truths.

He reminded me that I was, and so often still am, a child with special needs who doesn’t know how to rest in the love of her adoptive Parent. He reminded me that I am the little girl with broken ears and broken eyes and my hands clenched around everything I can grab, and yet He walked into this broken world so He could adopt me into His family.

Hiltibidal draws us back to Romans 8:15, which says, “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’”

Emboldened to follow the clear path God had set before her, no matter the challenges, Hiltibidal began to see His faithfulness and power in their new lives with Joy.

Joy is five now. She’s more than doubled in size since her adoption, is fluent in sign language and actually advanced in communication according to an evaluation from her school. With a hearing aid, she can hear and understand English, and after a year of physical therapy, her therapist suggested we discontinue her services because Joy no longer needs the extra help.

Life with Joy has become such an amazing blessing for her family. Not only does she enrich their lives with all the love, hugs, and learning experiences a child comes with, her special needs point the Hiltibidals to the Gospel on a daily basis.

In my life, God has used the world of special needs to make me stop depending on my life plans and my strength. Instead, He’s offered me His plan and His strength. When Joy’s special needs caused her to depend on me, I had no choice but to take my weakness to God.

I’m not strong. I’m not powerful. I’m not ‘normal.’ I’m as dependent as my special needs daughter. We are all dependent on the power of God for our next breath. Resting in that reality is what can give you and me the ability to look around and reach out and meet the needs of others, the way God reached down from Heaven to meet ours.

God has this wonderful way of structuring our lives such that we endure challenges designed specifically to draw us closer to Him and to teach us to be like Him. When those challenges involve our children, what a wonderful insight we gain into the heart of our Father in Heaven.

 

Continue Reading

Faith

All It Took Was $6, A Thunderstorm, And A “God Thing” To Launch This Country Star’s Career

Published

on

By

Did you know that every single detail in your life is a thread in an intricate tapestry woven together by the Master? Where you’re born, the friends you’ll make, who you’ll marry, the jobs you land, the ministries you serve, that’s all God’s beautiful orchestration.  

He has a perfect will, and try as we might, we’re his creatures and we can’t rush Him or outrun Him. It’s not our time to shine until God says so.

That’s the incredible lesson fledgling country star Russell Dickerson had to learn the hard way.

take our poll - story continues below

Should President Trump declare a national emergency to build the wall?

  • Should President Trump declare a national emergency to build the wall?  

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Completing this poll grants you access to Flag And Cross updates free of charge. You may opt out at anytime. You also agree to this site's Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Dickerson, a Belmont University grad, had tried to make waves in the country music scene for years. He’d landed a record deal way back in 2010, but it had “definitely been a slow journey,” he shared with Fox News, describing the trials he went through trying to “get big” before it was truly his time.

“We had no money, no budget, no nothing and we had been turned down, turned down, turned down,” the singer recalled.

“The biggest first step was our music video [that] my wife shot,” Dickerson said, retelling the frustrated moments that led up to his big break.

Dickerson and his wife, Kailey, finally had enough and decided to try their hand at recording a music video: “We’re like, alright, we’re going to do this on our own.”

“So we shot this music video for ‘Yours’ and if you watch it on YouTube,” the singer explains, “it’s just me walking down a road and my wife is in my SUV just shooting out of the back and it just starts raining and there’s lightning everywhere.”

What might of seemed like the end result of years of failure and frustration to the Dickersons was really just God’s perfect timing, all the way down to the thunderstorm that gave the video such an exciting vibe.

“It was this God moment, totally,” he said.

God wasn’t done with the Dickersons yet, though. Not long after the video, which cost just six dollars to film (possibly the gas for the SUV?), an industry exec reached out to Dickerson and the following events just “snowballed into this perfect storm” that finally gave his career wings.

Ultimately, Dickerson says, if God gave him this dream, God was going to be the one to make it a reality.

“I feel like God’s given me this dream of being on stage and writing a song, even of getting a tour bus…All of these dreams he put into my mind and into my heart are finally coming to fruition.”

The good, the bad, the frustrating, the hopeless, the glorious, every part of our lives is in God’s hands, and we don’t believe in a God who can fail. The next time you find yourself, like Dickerson, struggling against the waves, stop, turn to God, and watch His perfect timing unfold.

Continue Reading

Latest Articles

Best of the Week

Send this to a friend