Standing in the Gap

September 26, 2013

Recovery is such a hopeful word. Through the thorns of secrecy and self-inflicted pain hope can appear like a diminutive sunrise on a winter’s day.  The air is crisp and although the sun is rising from afar, sudden bursts of light offer new promises and potential for the coming day. When an individual has struggled for years with an addiction the recovery process can be slow and grueling.  Have you ever seen a sunrise in the midst of fog? Covering the sun is a thick cloud of water droplets suspended at earth’s level.  Although the sunrise takes longer to appear, once it finally does the sun reflects off the dense cloud to form an unbelievable sunrise. Much like silver being refined by fire, the silversmith holds the silver in the middle of a fire and at its hottest point it begins to burn away all the impurities. Just as the sun comes through the covering of fog and the refined silver through the fire, it takes a person’s entire strength to come out of an addiction and see the real beauty of recovery.

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 September is National Recovery Month. This can be a time to reflect and help those around us who have been impacted by addiction. Because recovery is such a broad term, recoverymonth.gov lucidly defines it as, “promoting the societal benefits of prevention, treatment, and recovery for mental and substance use disorders, celebrates people in recovery, lauds the contributions of treatment and service providers, and promotes the message that recovery in all its forms is possible.” In the midst of an addiction an individual will often scoff at the last part of the definition, “and promotes the message that recovery in all its forms is possible.” Danny Molloy, Co-founder and Director of Operations at The Bridge “Standing in the Gap” and member of Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce, was one of those people.

Molloy grew up in Boston, Massachusetts and was just a child when his parents divorced. Even though his dad was given custody, his dad’s addiction to alcohol eventually led his aunt to raise him. The pain from his childhood led to his own use of alcohol and drugs once he reached high school. He assumed the drugs would dilute the pain, however it only increasingly made it worse. His life became a downward spiral of using every day and becoming addicted to heroin and oxytocin.  During his addiction he been to twenty rehabs, five psychiatric hospitals and even arrested. His life finally came to a halt when he came to a Birmingham rehab center. Something was different this time.

Molloy describes that what ultimately changed his fast life of drugs, alcohol and remission was his love for Christ. He elucidates, “I heard the good news of the gospel at a small church in Vincent, Alabama and my life has never been the same. I understand now, that every day, I have a choice to make. I don’t have to let my past dictate my future. My life is far from perfect but I understand that God has a plan for my life and I only want to follow His plan.” Molloy’s testimony of being in over twenty rehab facilitates and finally finding hope is precisely what the gospel entails. We all have sin, whether it is a drug addiction or a lying issue. No matter how big or how small, we are in need of someone to “stand in the gap” as Molloy says. When we believe in our hearts and confess with our mouths that Jesus died on our behalf and has forgiven us for the rebellion we have against him, it is then that our lives are transformed. Through Jesus’ death a person now have new life.

After hearing the good news and being in recovery his life was still in disarray. He found himself unemployed and struggling to tell employers of his scattered work history. It was then that he met Paul Sumner, who not only owns Principal Mortgage, but is on the board at Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce, who truly helped him out. Together they started a non-profit called The Bridge “Standing in the Gap.” Their main objective is to help people in the community who are in recovery. “We aim to help individuals locate employment, a mentor and safe housing all while displaying the love of God. We also seek to share a real-life account with as many youth as possible on the dangers of drug and alcohol addiction from a firsthand perspective,” Molloy explains. When it comes to recovery, an individual who is in the pit of an addiction will often be more affected when talking to someone who has experienced their same pain and trials. It gives people hope to see it not only is possible to stop, but also to succeed.

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Just like silver being refined in the hottest part of the fire to come out with the least amount of impurities, our lives often have to do the same.  Danny Molloy is now clean, sober, married and running a non-profit to help others struggling through the same issues he was dealing with. He has been through the fire and will go through seasons of severe heat, but all in all, it is making him and those around him better because of it.

If you want any more information on The Bride “Standing in the Gap,” you can contact Danny Molloy at: danny@thebridgeal.org or www.thebridgeal.org. We couldn’t be more thankful for his transparent testimony and hope to help others in the community.