Loving and Serving West Dallas

Loving and Serving West Dallas Hero Image Loving and Serving West Dallas Hero Image

Throughout June, Watermark is focusing on ways we can love our city to the glory of God, specifically with ministry partners in Dallas. Mercy Street is a faith-based nonprofit organization with a goal to equip, disciple, and teach future leaders. Grant Terry has served as a coach and mentor to students over the last six years. He now serves as an ambassador and liaison between Mercy Street and Watermark to help find people to help invest in the kids and community of West Dallas. Learn more about opportunities with Mercy Street.

How did you come to know the Lord?

“I was raised in a Christian home and came to know the Lord as my Savior at a young age while at youth camp. Athletics were always a large part of my family growing up, specifically baseball. As I began to grow older, the weekends were spent across the nation traveling and playing games. I went from finding my identity in Christ; to finding it in my teammates, opponents, and those watching the game. I spent my high school and college years pursuing the world and my sinful flesh. After college, I found myself in a leadership position at work, in a relationship, and with a brand-new vehicle. I later moved back to Dallas, resigned from that position, the relationship I thought was heading towards marriage ended, and my car was no longer new. I was empty. Everything I was placing my identity in was gone. The next several months were filled with darkness. However, the Lord in His sovereignty placed two mentors in my life. I felt like I needed to ‘clean up’ before returning to the church, but they reminded me, ‘there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus’ (Romans 8:1) and that I’m ‘saved by grace through faith, not by works so that no man may boast’ (Ephesians 2:8-9).”

How did you get involved with Mercy Street?

“In early 2015, I became a Member at Watermark and found Mercy Street when I was looking for places to serve. When I found there was a need for baseball coaches, I quickly signed up. It was an opportunity to be around baseball again, but this time to share the hope and joy of Jesus Christ. The Lord used the next two years to open my eyes and my heart to the community of West Dallas. Within my first six months of coaching, two of the kids had friends that were shot, and another kid’s house was hit in a drive-by. After hearing what they’ve experienced, how could I leave?

“When it wasn’t baseball season, I really missed the kids and their community. So, I started looking for ways to serve outside of coaching. This is when I committed to serving as a mentor to a high school freshman, Decoran.

“I had the privilege to mentor him for the next four years and to walk with him through so many different seasons and events. It’s been awesome, it’s been challenging, but it’s been so life-giving. Walking with someone through high school is a big commitment, but in my own high school years, I didn't have a mentor or someone I could walk through life with that was older, a little bit wiser, and who could guide me in my relationship with the Lord. It was an opportunity I didn’t have that I wanted to provide for someone else.

“The Lord used that mentorship and friendship in so many ways. There was a six-month stretch where I had the inability to walk because I ruptured my Achilles tendon. I was fearful I wouldn’t be able to meet Decoran’s needs, however, that season he met mine. The roles reversed because he was following up with me, checking in, and asking how he could pray for me. We mutually have invested in each other, and it has become a lifelong, Christ-centered friendship.”

What would you tell someone who is considering serving with Mercy Street?

“I think there is something really unique about sitting across the table from someone who’s been raised differently from you. It puts a face, a name, and a relationship to the statistics you hear about. It’s Decoran. It’s Julian, it’s KJ, it’s Bobo. It’s a person. It’s a friend.

“Get out of your comfort zone. We all can tend to operate in a bubble. Serving isn’t always comfortable, but I am a firm believer that anything worth having is just beyond your comfort zone. I spent years pursuing my flesh, but through Mercy Street, Christ gave me an opportunity to serve and love the community of West Dallas (Galatians 5:13).

“Say yes. Be available. Be in West Dallas. There are so many ways you can serve God and His people with Mercy Street. The needs are endless, and there is literally a list full of kids’ names that have signed up to have a mentor that are waiting for someone to volunteer. This is an opportunity to be God’s hands and feet in our city.”