Meet Willie

Willie is now better than ever!


My name is Willie Moore. I was born in Waycross, Georgia, to a 16-year-old single mother. When I was a small child, we moved from Waycross to Florida, where my mother was from. My mother worked hard to finish school, and life was suitable for a while. The stress of raising a child alone at such a young age with limited family support was overwhelming for my mother. She turned to drugs as a way to cope with her life and her past traumas. My mother suffered from some horrific childhood abuse.

Living through the ups and downs of an addiction and moving from town to town and state to state certainly took its toll on me. I consistently found myself being a new student in a new environment. Trying to make new friends was brutal for me. I was always alone. I am an only child.

Sometimes, my mother would stay away from home, and I was left alone. I found an outlet by playing sports, mainly football, and I was pretty good at it. Being good at a sport, you gain popularity amongst your peers. The only form of family that I had were my coaches and teammates. I continued playing football through high school and college. While in college, my addiction itself started to flourish. I began drinking alcohol regularly, and from there, it spiraled out of control. Still, at this point, I thought I didn’t have a problem. I went on to marry my high school sweetheart. We had two wonderful boys.

I joined the Army and had a remarkable career for a while. I ended up losing job after job because of addiction. My decision to use drugs cost me to lose my family. My wife divorced me. I still didn’t think that I had a problem. At this time in my life, I started having more issues with law enforcement. In and out of jail, there were numerous fees, and I still didn’t think I had a problem. At times in my life, I would stop using and drinking for a while to get my head on straight, and then I would start back again. I’ve attempted recovery several times before, but in
the back of my mind, I knew that I wanted to use again and that I would. After I spent almost a year in jail, I figured it was time for a change. I could control my addiction, and for a while, my drug use slowed down. I still used occasionally, but certainly not as heavily as before.

I experienced the death of a close loved one, and while grieving heavily, my addiction took a firm hold on me that I couldn’t shake. I found myself in a very dark place. I found myself looking at my whole life and feeling disgusted with myself. I was disappointed in myself for the choices and lifestyle I had chosen. I didn’t know what to do, so I turned to God. I cried out to God. I asked God to save me from where I was, not knowing how it would happen. God showed up in my life. He brought me to the Rescue Mission.

I remember walking through the doors of the Rescue Mission, a shattered man. And daily, God started putting the pieces of my life back together again. I became the man that I was created to be—a man of God. I took off my mask.

I wiped away my shame. I allowed God to do within me what I couldn’t do with myself. I feel good about who I am today. I feel good about what the future holds for me. The relationships I had torn apart are now slowly coming back together again. I’m now able to look at myself and not be ashamed of my identity. I am a new creation in God. I’m ready to serve God and follow His will for my life. I no longer feel as if I’m in bondage. For once, I feel free, which is a true blessing from God.

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