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Student Profile: Kyle Benecke Leaves Comfort Zone

Junior Kyle Benecke has a slew of rising talents. While being on Sports Link and starring in Track and Cross Country, Kyle maintains superior academic standing. One may think this cool kid with the Mohawk can't possibly do anything else. But, when asked about some of his favorite activities, Kyle brings up his band, Leaving Cardboard Houses, as if it were nothing.

Serving as lead singer, songwriter, and ukulele player, Kyle and drummer Chris Volzke make up the band. Although they are just two, they sure know how to fill a stage with musical presence. Writing, producing, managing, and scheduling gigs, Kyle is making use of his dual major in Business and Ministry to handily grow the band's popularity.

Kyle didn’t always know where his love of running and music would lead. It became evident that God called him to ministry and music. Using music as his ministry, Kyle's heart and fire for God--behind the lights, glitz, and glamour of musicians and upcoming artists--is inspiring.

Wanting to use the band to witness and minister, Kyle affirms, "Attending Ohio Christian is having a major influence on my thinking."  Forming a mix-tape group during freshman year and discovering he loves making music, Kyle was not surprised when drummer Chris asked him to start the band:  "Being at OCU and meeting musically-talented people like my friends Amy, Jim, and Hunter gave me my first opportunities to lead worship with them.  OCU and the people I have met here create an environment where I learn ministry doesn’t have to take traditional form. Whether or not this is something I will do the rest of my life, OCU has taught me worship can be organic and show up in ways least expected. Ministry can look different, and, overall, it is how you interact with people that matters”.

Through the discipline, encouragement, and God-centered focus that OCU embodies, a bright future is surely in store for those who work hard, seek God, and leave their comfort zone. Who knows?  You might just end up like Kyle--with bright eyes, adventurous heart, and compassionate mind that strives to actively pursue God on a path that sets your dreams, hopes, and future ablaze!

For Leaving Cardboard Houses, from the start it has been about leaving the 'comfort zones' and undertake a life for God. After all, says Kyle, “Living a Godly life is about doing 'uncomfortable' things where God leads you and helping others to follow.”

"What's the point of life? Pursuing truth is how I want my lyrics defined. Right now I don't know if I’m doing that well. What if I'm just writing music to sell?  I don't want this to be about money or fame, I pray I'm doing this for more than just my name." (Leaving Cardboard Houses, Nothing to Say, March 21st, 2017 as part of the EP Homesick (Debut EP)).