God has led Terry Cliett on a journey to help those many of us would turn away. After growing up in the church, at the tender age of 14 Terry’s relationship with God grew into a more personal and intimate relationship. By 17 years old he became licensed to preach and ordained at 20 years old, and the pastor of a church in Wrightsville, Ga.
Then he moved to Milledgeville and became the pastor of Black Springs Baptist Church at 25. Life was good, he loved his church family, but God tugged on his heart for more. He desired to reach more people. He transitioned to full-time Evangelism speaking all over the Southeast at retreats, revivals, workshops, and summer camps for youth. Since 1978, Terry worked in ministry in many different forms.
God is full of surprises!
Following God’s calling is not easy nor do you have a clear path. Many times he and his wife have stopped and asked where God wanted them to go next. Often there is a time of waiting before God reveals the next step. Rarely did God move in the direction they saw coming. God is full of surprises which definitely keeps life exciting!
If you had asked him thirty years ago where he would be now, his answer would differ completely from the direction God took him. He imagined working full-time as a pastor in a nice-sized church with an excellent staff supporting him. However, he has moved from preaching in churches to being a chaplain in a prison to now leading people to live a life full of integrity. He has written curriculum to help people change their lives and to be a tool in their toolbox for life changes and challenges. Never would he dreamed of writing a novel and self-help curriculum.
The Integrity Project Birthed
He published the novel Cupside Down in January 2017 based on his ministry the Integrity Project, which helps people develop a foundation based on making good decisions. He based some characters on the people he has mentored through the years. How the changes in their lives turned them in amazing directions.
The Integrity Project birthed from a need to create better material to teach in the prison. After one session with the inmates, they were hungry for more and asked him to create a twelve-week curriculum. This random act of providing better material one night for inmates has grown in ways Terry never could have imagined or planned out by himself.
A school in Macon asked him to develop a Business Ethics Curriculum for their Business School. In 2004 Baldwin County sentenced people to the Integrity Project. Terry created a PowerPoint presentation and student handbook to teach the course.
He did not fill the curriculum with scripture references, but leaves it open for a person to say, “Jesus is one of my core values, and I am not living the way I should.” This opens the door for spiritual conversations with many of the students of the course.
Salt To Make Them Thirsty
The Integrity Project is a ministry, but not classified as a ministry directly. The class is the salt to make them thirsty for the water they long for and need. “What we are doing now has the salt to make them thirsty for change and direction, but they also can have a glass of water too.” This opens the door for them to explore the idea of faith in their life.
Many people who have graduated from the course remember the faith their families taught them, and they return to church to grow in their faith. By Terry and the others who help run the Integrity Project being obedient to God, then the Holy Spirit moves in the lives of the students.
Terry’s vision for the Integrity Project is to help people learn the core values to live a positive life or resubmit themselves to the positive life they had fallen from. He takes the course or sits in a class every couple of years to refresh his own life.
The Integrity Project Changes Lives
He would love for the Integrity Project to spread to churches and business to have a uniform vocabulary for teaching, construction, and correction within their walls. If you have an objective standard from outside of your walls, it gives more credibility to what you are doing, and not just because your by-laws say so or the company rules say so.
In 2005 a man arrested because he was shoplifting, and high on drugs at the time came through the Integrity Project class. He quit crack cocaine and crystal meth because of the class. Returned to earn certification to teach and now owns a franchise in the Cobb County Center of the Integrity Project. Thousands have come through his center. Most through the court system for shoplifting and minor defenses. One example of many how The Integrity Project has changed lives dramatically with the ripple effect on many others.
The Integrity Project is working toward being a resource to help all kinds of people ~ men and women, young and old. Terry wants to reach the people who need life change or a good foundation for life. And he wants to share what he knows with them by making complicated things simple.
Partner With The Integrity Project
Next, he is looking for churches and businesses to partner with The Integrity Project by giving donations to sponsor students for the four-week course, then provide ongoing support and contact after the class is over. If you are a church or business interested in partnering with The Integrity Project, please contact Terry for more information.
People come to church and say I want to change my life. We (the church) tell them they need to read the Bible. Terry has a Master’s degree, and if you laid a big Bible in front of him and told him to read this book to change his life, he would be ready to give up.
The Bible is a huge book, but if you say here are some steps, you can take. Here are some ways we can help you start. Here is a reference book to help you grow. People need practical steps and a mentor/guide to help them along the way. A lot of times we want to throw a Bible at someone and hope this fixes their life, but the Bible is difficult for many new believers to understand. They may give up before they even start.
As the church, we could do a better job of reaching the lost, and those in search of a relationship with Christ. It is overwhelming to think about, but God will provide what we need when we seek His wisdom and guidance. Sometimes it is as simple as befriending someone and being there for them in life. Answer questions they may have about their faith walk and pray for them and with them.
Pray For The Integrity Project
Terry prays for God to multiply the number of people they can impact through individual conversations, classes, and published works. Please keep Terry and The Integrity Project in your prayers. The Integrity Project and Terry is making a profound impact in our community and around the world.
Anybody who has followed Christ knows the path is not always easy or fun, but can bring great reward and satisfaction in being obedient to the calling on our life. For Terry, the best part about The Integrity Project is teaching the classes and interacting with the students. He finds the most rewarding part to be the feedback from students when they share how their family received Christ through salvation or relationships restored.
God is doing great work through Terry and The Integrity Project team. If you would like to be a part of helping others find hope and restoration of their lives, please contact Terry Cliett. You can find his contact information below.
Contact The Integrity Project & Terry Cliett: