Meet Elder Candidate Josh Benadum

Xenos elders recently proposed Josh Benadum as a candidate for elder. Get to know Josh, and how God has worked in his life through the years:

What is your history with Xenos, and what has engaged you to connect here?

My parents were introduced to Christ in Xenos during the 1980's while my father was in medical school. We moved around a bit before eventually coming back to Columbus, but then moved again to Cambodia as missionaries when I was 14. During high school I struggled with my faith, uncertain if the God of the Bible was real. Going into my senior year of high school I had no real plans to follow Him after I graduated, but a summer spent in Salem, India doing Tsunami relief work with the India Gospel League changed that. I was so impressed by the authenticity of the Indian Christians and the other high school students I met from Xenos on that trip that I decided it was worth giving God a shot after all. Once I graduated, I felt no particular connection to Columbus, but finally chose to move back because this was the only place where I knew of people my own age living radically for Christ. I have remained here for that same reason: I have found this to be an incomparable community of people living radically for Christ. I also believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that God brought me here to both learn and serve.

What do you feel are the strengths and weaknesses of our church?
I feel very conscious of the tension Xenos tries walks between being a movement and an institution. I have great admiration for the wisdom and humility with which our leadership has balanced these realities for decades. I believe this balance is going to be critical as we look towards what God wants to do in this church over the next 30 years. We will need to keep asking God to show us how to avoid the weaknesses and maximize the strengths of each.
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What's a favorite experience you've had at Xenos?
Discipling high school students to maturity. There is nothing more rewarding I have done in my entire life then discipling guys from the age of 14 all the way to seeing them lead for God, marry strong spiritual women, and now start families dedicated to worshiping God.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I love to play pick-up sports, especially basketball and soccer. I enjoy high-end coffee, mid to low-end wine, and love trying new places to eat with my wife.

Any fun facts? Curious life events? 
Growing up in Cambodia is certainly unusual. I speak Khmer and English and some French. And I am ambidextrous!