By Mark Ellis, Senior Correspondent for ASSIST News Service
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (ANS — January 17, 2017) — He grew up in a Christian home with loving parents, but something went terribly wrong in his teen years that caused a slow but steady descent into addiction. Then God sent a powerful dream about hell that awakened him to his need for change.
“They were great parents to me,” says Billy Miller. “I knew the truth of the gospel. I played sports. I was a great football, baseball player and basketball player. I had a good childhood,” he recalls.
He grew up in an affluent neighborhood in Arcadia, California, and later, Scottsdale, Arizona. Everything looked good on the outside. The family went to church together on Sundays and Billy attended youth group on Wednesday nights.
“I believed in God and I knew there was a God, but I didn’t have a relationship with him,” Billy admits. “I never prayed. I never read the Word. I didn’t have a foundation in Christ.”
At the same time, he was intrigued with the world. “I started to fall into pornography at 13. I was very addicted to it. It was like a drug. I was ashamed but I couldn’t quit,” he confesses.
Little sins led to bigger sins. At 15 he smoked his first cigarette. Then it was drinking with friends, sometimes after games. “We went out and partied and played beer pong,” he recalls. “The six pack turned into a 12-pack and that turned into hard alcohol.”
Friends gave him marijuana, Adderall, and cocaine. “Here I am the all-American kid and at 17, I was an alcoholic, drinking every day with my friends, even before school. It was getting out of control; I couldn’t stop,” he says.
“I was trying to feel happy by filling the emptiness with alcohol, pornography and pills. But it was like nothing would satisfy me. It would satisfy me for a season of time but not a long period of time.”
He found himself sliding deeper into a quagmire, undermining body and soul. “You do drugs and then the next day you wake up and the high is gone and you feel worse. I would wonder who I had become.”
Photo captions: 1) Billy takes a selfie with kids in Romania. 2) Billy in the center with his parents (left) and Jesus 4 Romania leaders, Darius and his wife (right). 3) Mark Ellis.
About the writer: Mark Ellisis Senior Correspondent for the ASSIST News Service (www.assistnews.net), and is also the the founder of www.GodReports.com, a website that shares testimonies and videos from the church around the world to build interest and involvement in world missions.
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