SAN ANTONIO - God's plan for expanding His kingdom entails working through the lives of people in His church in such a way that they testify about Him, according to Victor Rodriguez, pastor of Life Church of San Antonio.
The former Baptist General Convention of Texas president was the featured preacher during the Hispanic rally that kicked off the Family Gathering, a bringing together of the diverse body of Texas Baptists.
The rally was filled with energetic worship and Rodriguez's poignant preaching, which encouraged Texas Baptists to share the gospel in their communities. God desires a relationship with every person. To do that, He works through His followers.
"The church - you and I - is part of God's diving plan," Rodriguez said, intermixing Spanish and English.
Churches are meant to share the gospel, Rodriguez said. Deeming anything else more important than that mission undermines its God-given purpose. While Life Church is involved in a variety of community ministries, sharing the gospel is the most crucial aspect of all it does.
Rodriguez recalled a man who came to him one day and thanked him for all the congregation was doing in the neighborhood. His family had greatly benefitted from it, and he was grateful. Rodriguez accepted his thanks gracefully. Then asked the man if he'd ever professed Christ as His savior. The man had not, so Rodriguez invited him to do so. Offering the opportunity was that important to the pastor.
The gospel is powerful on its own to transform lives.
"Only a healthy church can minister to a sick society," he said.
God is powerful, Rodriguez said. He wants to use His followers in mighty ways to transform the lives of others and entire communities.
"Christ lives in your church. Christ loves your church," Rodriguez said.
"There is power where Christ lives."