Candlewood Church Omaha Pastor Xavier Rodriguez Shares His Personal Faith Story
Stories are powerful and when you share the story of how God transformed your life, it can help transform other people’s lives and impact where they spend eternity. That’s why at Candlewood Church in Omaha, Nebraska, we encourage people to write out their personal faith story as a way to share their faith with others. Jesus transformed the life of Xavier Rodriguez in a powerful way. Read his personal faith story below:
From Crashing Waves to a Firm Foundation
Before my relationship with Jesus I was tossed around by the storms of life, but now I stand on a firm foundation.
The Storms of Life
Like most people, I’ve gone through several “storms” in life. I grew up as a young child without my dad, after my parents were divorced when I was 3. For one reason or another, I ended up moving a lot, attending 8 different schools in 5 states and 2 countries before graduating from High School. Most devastating though, was my mom passing away the week of my 14th birthday, followed by custody and guardianship drama when my dad showed up with the police to take my brother and I home with him to a different state.
These ever-changing circumstances and constant challenges left me like a ship tossed at sea, with new waves constantly crashing in from all directions. Is change the only constant in life? It sure felt like it.
Who Are These People?!
I then moved to Omaha, Nebraska to go to college, where I met a group of people who loved God and other people around them, and took those commitments seriously. I had met a lot of people over the years in many different places, but with this group of people, I didn’t have to try to impress them, and I didn’t have to demonstrate why I deserved attention and acceptance (which is what I was used to having to do). They simply loved me.
At first, I thought they had to be posers who were faking it (could they really care about me like that?). But over time I learned that they were able to show me love, even when I didn’t deserve it, because God had shown them love, even when they didn’t deserve it. They knew that even though they were all sinners, Christ died for them on the cross to pay the debt they owed because of their sin. Having experienced that first hand, they were able to treat me that way too.
A Real Event in History
I had never really cared that much about God, and wasn’t sure what I believed, but these new friends of mine also challenged me to find out what was true. This led me to conclude that it is more reasonable to believe in Jesus than it is not to. One reason for that is the historical event of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. I found out that Jesus coming back to life is the best explanation of the historical facts: that Jesus really lived, he really died, and many people really claimed that they saw Him alive again.
And that changes everything.
After understanding that Jesus actually rose from the dead, I decided I would stop living just for myself, that I would turn from my sin and turn towards Jesus. I thanked him for dying for me on the cross so that I could be forgiven, and told him I would try to live for him from then on.
A Firm Foundation
This hasn’t always led to easy circumstances and smooth sailing. But it has resulted in a restored relationship with my dad, something I never thought would be possible. It has resulted in finding comfort after the loss of my mom, knowing that God is with me. And it has resulted in giving me a firm foundation to stand on, one that I know will endure more than the ever-changing circumstances in this life because through His resurrection, Christ has proven to have power beyond this life.
“The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety.” – Psalm 18:2 (NLT)
So now it doesn’t really matter what people think of me because I know that Christ thinks I’m worth dying for. It doesn’t matter if people leave me or disappoint me, because I know that Christ never will. And it ultimately doesn’t matter what happens to me in this life, because I know I will live with Christ in the next one.
Connect with Xavier Rodriguez
Today, Xavier Rodriguez is a Candlewood Church pastor in the Omaha church location. If you have questions about Xavier’s story or about starting a relationship with God, we’d love to talk more. Connect with us today at Candlewood Church Omaha. Please call us at 402.991.5152 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.