Recent News

Save the Date for Xenos Summer Institute!

Mark your calendars and be sure to get time off from work! Join the thousands of Christian workers who will be at this year's Summer Institute, July 5th - 7th. The 2017 theme is, God's Living Word with key speakers D.A. Carson, Douglas Stuart and John Lennox (via video).

Around 4000 people attend the Summer Institute! What an amazing opportunity to hear from top Christian leaders who will share their expertise. It's a great resource to help Christians become better equipped for ministry, renew their motivation for Christian work and meet new, like-minded people!  You can sign up todayOver 200 people have already registered to attend.

Again, this year will have pre-registration for breakout sessions. Registering for breakout sessions was a great success last year and helped to minimize over-crowding in the classrooms!  There are over 40 thought-provoking breakout sessions being offered. You can read all of the class descriptions online.

New this year, if you volunteer you can attend the conference for FREE!  Approximately 400 volunteers are needed in order for the logistics to go smoothly.  There are still plenty of roles to choose. More information about the Summer Institute is online

Helping a Hurting Friend

When people we care about are going through painful circumstances sometimes it's hard to know how to help.  The biblical counselors at Xenos offer the following advice.

Bev DeLashmutt says when we have a friend who is hurting and we can't relate to their pain that 2 Corinthians 1: 3-4 is a good place to start.  It states that, "...the God of ALL comfort who comforts us in ALL our afflictions so that we may comfort those who are in ANY affliction..."  Bev said she has learned from this verse that it is more important to teach someone how to receive God's comfort than be able to relate to their experience. She tells them the many ways that God has comforted her and assures them that God wants to give comfort in their time of need also. 

Counselors Give Advice for Healthy Marriages

We asked Xenos counselors for their advice on how to keep marriages strong.

Learn to laugh at yourselves and practice the 'one another commands' at home and in ministry,” Bev DeLashmutt suggests.

Connie Rue likes the idea from The Relationship Cure by John Gottman - you learn to recognize when your spouse is bidding to be connected to you (hint: it may not always be something that you immediately recognize). Once you notice their bids, you can practice turning towards those bids to connect with each other.

Ben Foust reminds husbands and wives to have the phrase “I was wrong” in your marriage toolbox and to use those words to repair when you’ve messed up.

Practice gratitude for your spouse. Even their weaknesses are God’s blessing to you and part of his plan for your continued maturity,” Chris Risley reminds. She also suggests turning off the TV or closing the laptop/tablet to spend time relating to each other.

Advice for Your Quiet Time with God

We know it’s important to spend time with God: “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness” (Matthew 6:33), “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105), and “Draw near to God and he will draw near to you” (James 4:8). And yet it can be really hard to consistently spend time focused on God and to protect against legalism during that time.

We asked Xenos church leaders what they do to keep their quiet time with God fresh.

Gary DeLashmutt, lead pastor, says he begins by asking God for open eyes. And he mixes things up. “Sometimes I read through a book of the Bible. There are times that I read a smaller passage for several days and try to memorize it. Or at times I get arrested by a Biblical theme and look at different passages on that theme. When I’m feeling depressed or under accusation, I just read passages about God’s love and promises.”

Join the 2017 Xenos Summer Institute Prayer Group

You can have an important job from the comfort of your home. That sounds too good to be true, but it is! We need prayer warriors for the Xenos Summer Institute.

Kim Van Keuls, External Relations Director remarks, “Every year we see God come through in jaw-dropping ways. I’ve been involved with XSI for about 10 years. The one thing we can count on is that things do not go perfectly or according to plan. What I hope is that our team would be quick to seek God in our ‘moment of need’ because no one has a more invested interest in using this event to equip people for ministry than God.“

Advice on Building Friendships, Part 2

We heard advice from several Xenos Biblical counselors last week on how to build friendships.

Friendships are vital to our fellowship as we seek to live out an Acts 2:42 lifestyle. 

Veteran counselor Bev DeLashmutt says, “Those who go out to find a friend, often do not find one. Those who go out to be a friend, find many.” She suggests reviewing the “one another” commands and being committed to practicing them with all the people in your life, whether they are friends or not, or whether you like them or not. Loving God’s Way by Gary DeLashmutt is a great book about applying the one another passages in community.

Counselors Offer Advice on Building Friendships

At the heart of Xenos Christian Fellowship are home churches, where people gather and really get to know one another. But it’s not always easy to form friendships. We asked the Xenos Biblical counselors for their advice.

“Learn to be a good listener – people will think you’re a great conversationalist if you work on active listening. Remember what they said to you and follow up on it later,” suggests Chris Risley.

When it comes to improving listening skills, Connie Rue suggests keeping your mouth closed, make eye contact with the person speaking and focus on what they are saying. Asking clarifying questions can also help.

Xenos sphere leader and counselor Ben Foust suggests that you try seeing how far you can get in a conversation just asking questions rather than sharing your own thoughts and opinions.

Xenos Counselors' Recap Favorite Parenting Advice

 

We asked Xenos’ Biblical Counselors what was the best parenting advice they have ever heard. Perhaps some of these ideas will intrigue you or spark a conversation in your family.

Chris Risley advocates for getting a regular date with each of your kids. “When they’re little, you may be going to McDonald’s so they can get chicken nuggets, but it’s worth it. Occasionally, they’ll give you a golden insight into what they’re thinking about.”  She also remembers the advice, “Turn off the TV.”

New Book from Gary on Colossians

"I have long loved Colossians as a concise yet profound summary of Paul's message about Jesus and the Christian life. It introduces spiritual seekers to what C.S. Lewis called "mere Christianity." It grounds younger Christians in their faith as they become familiar with its contents. Christian workers will derive lasting nourishment and motivation by memorizing and meditating on specific passages," Gary DeLashmutt states in his introduction to his new book on Colossians.

If you love Gary's teaching outlines that give you such a depth of understanding on the passage that he's covering, you will enjoy his new book, Colossians: Christ Over All; Christ in You.

New Oasis Procedures Coming for Classes Grades K - 5

Oasis will be changing their procedures for elementary and TNT classrooms over the next three weeks. Parents will be given a tag when they drop off their child in classrooms for Kindergarten - 5th grade. They will need this tag to pick up the child at the end of CT. This enables us to ensure the right child goes to the right adult.

We understand this may be an inconvenience for some parents, but we believe the safety of the kids is worth it. Please convey this information to other parents.

If you're dropping off a child for a friend, you'll want to pick up the tag and give that tag to your friend for pick up. If you're picking up a child for a friend, make sure you secure the tag from your friend before going to the child's classroom.

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