My Story

It’s weird all the things we remember from our past. I can remember my first cigarette and my first taste of alcohol, but I will never forget my first rejection. I was only 2 years old and can remember all the detail as I cried and watch everything unfold before my very eyes. Me and my four siblings (my twin brother and I in the picture crying) watched a man in light blue pants and a polo shirt pick up my mom with her two suitcases. She grabbed her pocketbook and another bag before she gave us all hugs and kisses.

She told us, “I love you and will be back soon.”

She then tells my older brother (10), “You’re in charge till your Daddy comes home from work.”

Things were crazy during this time but got even crazier when my dad left a few months later. My dad needed help and so my aunt and grandmother both helped him for close to a year before he got back in the picture.

He continued raising us in a tough environment. The five of us lived in a broken-down mobile home that had so many problems. We were very poor and so that translated into no running water (couldn’t fix a busted pipe during winter). We also had no power for electric heat and although a friend of Dad’s gave us a kerosene heater, it was still very cold!

Not to continue with this saga of poor conditions, but it’s important so you understand how I grew up. We had to bring in water from the outside to bathe, cook, wash dishes and even our clothes. We would pray that our clothes wouldn’t catch fire as they hung close to the kerosene heater. We pretty much wore the same clothes to school and even used duct tape for our shoes (too small). We had it as rough as the bugs and rats because they were living in our quarters too.  I remember a rat crawling over my right leg and would sleep between my legs on top of the covers!  The next morning, I watched it walk away.

And just to add insult to injury, our home caught fire 3 different times. I know that God was watching over us because at least 2 of those times, our trailer should’ve burned down but didn’t. This is how we all grew up as kids! Outside of our home, we all enjoyed playing sports and were also good at them. Though we only had to pay $5 for every sport. We still had to work hard to get that money and were given cleats by the recreation club.

I don’t know if it was the terrible conditions or the lack of parenting during my younger days or not, but when I turned 14, I gave my life to Jesus. I was hoping that God had a BIG “S” on his chest and would fly down and rescue us all, but that didn’t happen. What God did do for me was that He made me stronger and wiser in preparation for the mission field years later. I felt that I had a calling in my life to be a minister or to preach which I used in essence when I went on many mission trips. Though I couldn’t afford them, God provided EVERY penny for the trip plus extra spending money too!

As I got older, I began clowning, miming, and workshops for youth camps. I tried to do this everywhere I could which included churches. Though I enjoyed this and wanted to be a speaker and travel all around, God had other things in mind. Besides wanting to be a speaker, I also had dreams to play pro baseball or go into the military. Both didn’t happen! I also wanted to have plenty of money and that didn’t happen either!

After I left the mission field with my wife, we both adopted a daughter from Ireland after we came home. Everything back in the states seemed to stop as it was hard to find work. The ministry was dead, and I wasn’t speaking to churches or using my clowning/miming to entertain and teach others. One of the workplaces I applied to was a place called Miracle Hill. Even they shot me down about 10 times I tried to apply. With all of these things not happening, I did what most would do; I became a car salesman! Though this didn’t work out in the long run, it did give me opportunities to meet others and network.

The real miracle came when I was selling cars. A man from Miracle Hill came by as I was selling cars and offered me a job as a counselor! Miracle Hill Ministries is a nonprofit organization in the Upstate of South Carolina dedicated to providing extensive services to adults in the form of food, shelter, clothing, counseling, personal development, and addiction recovery. This was truly a miracle, not just because my last application was 6 months old, but also because I had experiences with many of the areas this nonprofit helps others with.

Today, I’ve been working at Miracle Hill Ministries for 18 years and am currently writing a book. One day, I also hope to be a stage performer using comedy to reach people for Jesus! My story can go in many directions, but I hope you are able to follow it. This is it in a nutshell.

Terry has Nominated (N) or Introduced (I) the following, Shared (S):

  1. Regina Adams (N, S)

My Advice

Please wait on GOD.

Jesus will never fail you.

He is all I have.

I try to remember that Psalm 18:19 says He (Jesus) delights in me. In other words, He finds joy in me, and He will find joy in you too.

Spread the word

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Billy Southerland says:

What an incredible story. Thanks so much for sharing it. I’m thankful that The Lord has continued to call you closer to Himself. ❤️🙏

Terry Black says:

Thank You all very Much.

Val Smith says:

Thank you Terry for making the world a better place.
You certainly have the heart of Jesus, you just keep giving.
May God bless you abundantly 😊. HAPPY BIRTHDAY.
Hope you have a wonderful day 🕺🏻👏😊

What a hard, but inspiring story! Terry’s life is a testament to how God can bring us out of the most difficult places and set us on a path of great purpose, if we’ll seek Him. I’m so grateful to know your story, Terry.

Wow, what a story! You have experienced a lot of hardship, and chose to lean into God instead of turn away. I respect you so much. I think comedy clubs need you. I’d love to watch a Christian comedian! And your future book sounds like an inspirational read. Thanks for sharing your life with us through vulnerability and with the love of Christ.

Gary Rogers says:

I’m so thankful that our friend Staci D. introduce the two of us together! Your life hasn’t been easy Terry, but you’re using your life and the things you’ve learned along the way to encourage others. I am so appreciative of that. Thanks for sharing your story and Nominating as well. I appreciate you and look forward to staying in touch. Please let me know if there’s anything I can ever do to help in any way, including prayer!

I love how you remeber where you came from and how far God has brought you. Don’t stop! God still has big plans for you.