by Rhett & Leah Rodriguez
As we’re approaching our last Sunday for a while at Grace, we’ve been reflecting on everything that the Lord has done since we’ve joined the church.
First and foremost, Leah and I have a place we belong.
I think about how I did not want to leave The Village until initially meeting with Pastor Ryan and hearing of the vision of Grace. Treasuring Jesus, Deep Friendships and Bold Evangelism. The church hadn’t even launched yet and I already felt challenged by the mission, particularly bold evangelism. I left that meeting and just thought “dang it, God is calling us here.” I went home, told Leah and while we didn’t decide then and committed to praying about the transition, we both hoped that Grace is where we would end up.
It’s been exciting and still is exciting being a part of a church plant and seeing the overall bigger picture of how Grace came to be. I never even put the thought together that we would sell our house and move a few minutes down the road just to be in the same city as our church. But we did and we’re in it for the long haul.
God has graciously used Grace to grow Leah and I in many ways.
We’ve been equipped as parents and because of that Rhys, at two-years old, has scripture memorized and we pray frequently that the Holy Spirit saves her soon. We’ve gotten to see other parents parent well, we’ve caught glimpses of what our future will look like as our kids grow older and how to walk with them well through the different seasons of their lives.
We’ve grown together in our leadership abilities. Leah getting to use her gifts and co-lead the hospitality team while helping me lead a Community Group. I’ve learned more leading a Community Group than I ever thought I would and I’ve learned that I am completely inadequate to do the task without the grace and strength of the Spirit. Praise God that He uses imperfect and sinful people like us in these positions!
We’ve grown together in our marriage. Being at Grace, establishing those deep friendship as well as our Community Group and Men’s/Women’s Trainings has been an avenue for God to reveal to us where we are not strong in our marriage. He graciously exposed my passivity and lackluster spiritual leadership. And in His grace, He didn’t leave us there exposed, but has put people around us to build us up, encourage and counsel us, and help us in our desire to be more like Christ. I’ve never felt more comfortable to suck than I have around this community of believers.
We’ll only be gone a year, Lord willing, which is a short period of time in the scope of eternity, but there is so much that we’re already missing and going to miss as this young church continues its momentum forward. We can’t wait to be back with everyone and to get back into the tempo of Grace Benbrook. We will pray for you, church, while we are away.