I was so broken that I felt that all hope was lost

 My name is Willie Mae. I grew up in a small town called Louvale, Georgia. I started doing drugs at a young age. I was so caught up that I never finished high school. Although I grew up attending church, I allowed Satan to take control of my life. I turned my back on all my church training because I just wanted to be part of the crowd. I was filled with guilt and shame at the way I was living, but there seemed to be no way out. I didn’t want to talk to the people that I was involved with, because I didn’t want them to think that I wanted to change – but deep inside I did. There was a fear gripping me so strong and tight until I felt that I couldn’t break free.

I tried to stop smoking crack-cocaine and live for the Lord, but it was a struggle, and my life was full of pain and misery. I had 3 sons and gave them all up for adoption while they were babies, although we knew where each other were. I figured, “Why drag them through all my problems?” Thinking back, I realize now that I had not totally surrendered to the Lord, and that I was trying to win the battle of addiction on my own, but to no avail. Even though I knew the Word of God, I was not living the Word. I was determined to do this on my own. Philippians 4:13 says that “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”, but even in knowing this I chose to do it my way. Even though I had the faith, I was allowing my circumstances to determine my actions.

I became involved in drug court, but was not successful since I was still using. I was angry and upset with myself because I just couldn’t put all the pieces together. One day, in a divine appointment, my husband was out for a walk and “happened” to walk past Damascus Way Home for Women and Children. He stopped in to learn more about it, and Deborah Hunsinger, the director, said to him, “You look like you could use some help.” He explained the situation and was told that if I could get there within the next few days, I could join the program. Drug court personnel made it happen and I entered the Damascus Way program.

Today I can say that I am free from the strongholds which had me bound. When I came to Damascus Way, I was so broken that I felt that all hope was lost, but I thank God for His words of hope and love. During my time there, I learned that Jesus loves me no matter what my past was, and that there is hope, as long as I keep the faith. Reading the Bible in nine months and believing that Christ died for my sins, as well as the sins of the world, has helped me to hold on just little while longer. I still suffer from hurts, habits, and hang-ups, but by God’s grace today I’ve learned to walk in the truth and to live by faith. Today I know that God has a purpose for my life, if I just stay in His will. Today I can say that God has done a miraculous work in me and I am no longer the same.

Willie MaeI’m thankful for a husband who stuck with me through it all, and that the relationships with my sons have been restored. That was a part of my life that was really missing, and now we have beautiful relationships. I’m also thankful for the donors who support the Mission and help change lives like mine. Thank you, and may God bless you for it.