LISTEN TO EP.62
Havilah Cunnington On Creating Boundaries For Greater Influence And Relational Health
Finding purposeful balance in a world of responsibility and expectation requires boundaries. Havilah Cunnington, a sought-after communicator, author, top-rated podcaster, and women’s pastor at Bethel Church explains that we are responsible for our attitudes, choices, and feelings, how to set and protect healthy boundaries around our core values, that our assignments and identity are different, and why it’s important to stay in our lane and find our giftings.
We are here to see your influence grow and increase so that you can make the world around you a better place. And ladies listen carefully. This podcast is for you guys. You can listen in, you may learn some things, but ladies, we’re gonna talk about finding balance in this crazy world. Family work marriage schedule. And we are joined today as co-host Crissy Cochran, she is gonna be part of this program. She is the executive director. She’s a very important person. So when she speaks, listen carefully, she’s pretty much gonna take over the show. We know that’s gonna happen, but where our guest today is unbelievable. We have Havilah Cunnington. She is with us. She is a sought after speaker, an accomplished author, a top rated podcaster. (Crissy follows every podcast. She does). She’s been in full-time ministry for 20 years. She’s on the pastoral team of Bethel church in Redding, California, she and her husband, Ben lead a nonprofit called Truth to Table, which is a mission to empower female believers and help to reach and teach as many people as possible with the truth of God’s world, through video outreach, practical resources and lifestyle tools, Ha and Ben live in red in California. They have four young sons and they have a golden doodle dog named Barkley. We’re glad that you’re with us. Havilah and thank you so much for joining us today.
Thank you for having me.
From Dyslexia to Author
If people followed you like as ardently as Crissy does, they would see today a confident, funny, powerful speaker, but it always hasn’t been that way. Can you just tell us about the surprising way God came into your life and called you and brought you to the place of full-time ministry that you are now enjoying?
Yes. Well, it is an honor to be here and I’m, you know, it’s, it’s amazing when you get to go to places and meet people or even via, you know, online meet people and it’s, it’s amazing what God is doing on the earth and how many incredible people are going after what he has. But I’m Havilah Cunnington. And I actually grew up in California. I’m a California girl and I grew up in the mountains. My dad was a traveling minister, atheist turned evangelist, and I was one of two of his do twin daughters. And he was on the road traveling and he would take us with him. And so about six months out of the year, we would travel around the world and he, he would teach in conservative or, you know, charismatic environments depending on where we were missions movements. But I quickly learned something in third grade.
I remember sitting in the classroom and the teachers asked me to go out of the room. So I could go to the back of the offices. I didn’t quite know what was happening. And they took it behind all the school, front school offices. And they basically had me tested for learning issues. And I remember doing a whole bunch of different testing and there was a someone from the state there. And when I got home that night, my parents sent me down and said, “Hey, we found out that you did come back. You are dyslexic, you have some reading and comprehension issues. And so you have a learning disability. This is gonna be a thing, and we’re not sure what God wants to do or how he’s gonna do it. But we want you to know this is really a part of your life”; and it wasn’t a big deal when you’re a kid, but as you go in junior high and then high school I found myself not just falling behind, but just getting completely lost.
So by the time I hit high school, I could not read out loud. You could not read my handwriting. I was a terrible speller. And so when I really had an encounter with the Lord, when I was about 17, I remember the Lord saying, I’ve called you. I’ve chosen you. And I thought, you, you pick the wrong person because I’m the girl with a learning disability. You should pick my twin sister. She looks the same. She sounds the same. And she’s the intellect. I don’t know if I can do this. And I remember him just saying to me, you know, have a, yeah, your hands are empty right now. I get it. But one day your hands are gonna be overflowing. If you trust me with your life. And I can say now, 20, almost 25 years later, that is the absolute truth. I’m the least one to be picked. But I do think that the grace of God makes what we cannot do on our own. It makes it possible.
Wow. That’s so good. That’s so good. And I, you know, Scott was right. I have been following you for, I don’t know if you remember, but Havilah, you were in Bakersfield, California a couple years ago and you spoke at our Devoted Women’s Conference at Canyon Hills.
I got to chat with you and I was like, man, Havilah, so cool. You’re just so relatable. And you have such, you know, this good information and wisdom just to help just women in whatever season of life we are in. And I love that story. I mean, I, myself I have twin girls. Okay. And my sister has twins too. Right. And I keep on telling my, our sister-in-law and you should have to twins and we could be on the news. So all three of us. Right. So I get that. But I also have a little girl who who is just recently, is just, you know, we’ve discovered that she’s a little bit dyslexic and I thought about you and I thought about your story. And I was like, you know, we have as a Christian communicator and she is really used to empower others and you know what? It was just so encouraging to just know like, that doesn’t mean it’s a, you know, a sentence for a life of, you know, discouraging that’s right fault. So that’s right. I love story love hearing that.
And the amazing part is this morning at 1:00 AM I finished writing my 10th book. And so it really is the testimony of God. Like there’s no way I should be able to do what I’ve done and on my own, even now, if you were to be, be around me, I wouldn’t come off as an intellectual. You’ll obviously those that are listening to this will know this very clearly. But it’s amazing what the anointing and the grace of God does. It takes what we cannot do and expands it and it overflows. And it’s tangible, like when God says I’m gonna put my grace and I’m gonna put my, my, my authority on you. That’s not just an idea. There is a tangible representation of the anointing of God and our life changes. And that’s what I think is very hard to talk people into. You have to actually get in the water to experience it. You can’t just say “the water’s good.”
Balance: A Powerful Speaker in Public, A Wife and Mother at Home
Yeah. I love that. That’s so good. And that’s so encouraging to, you know, men and women alike, right. I mean both across the board, but now I kinda wanna dive into some questions about you and your family, cuz I know you and your husband, you guys have a pretty unique relationship with you being the face and, and the you know, the core teacher of the ministry and then your husband, Ben, like he does a lot behind the scenes. I, you guys do this together, but he’s a lot behind the scenes. Right. And he is like the big empower and supporter of you. So I love that. But can you just talk to us about like, how does did that just kind of happen naturally? And I think it’s really an important for women to know, like, you know, how do you keep the balance with you being like a really strong and confident leader, but still letting your husband lead in the home in a biblical masculinity? If I can say this.
Yes. Isn’t it true? And you know, I didn’t think I would be the poster girl for this, but I it’s amazing that you know, you obey God and all of a sudden you’re championing things that you didn’t think you would be championing. And you know, I, I grew up as a strong-willed, you know, loud, aggressive girl like I did. I was that, you know, my parents bought the book how to raise a strong willed child and they had it on our coffee table, my entire childhood. And I knew it wasn’t about my sister . I knew it was about me. And they were letting me know that they were educating themselves about dealing with me. And my dad’s intense as well. You know, I said at my dad’s a full Italian, so I’m Italian, you know, bread and raised and love my, my roots.
But when I got married, I for a long time was single. I was single for a long time. And I, and I say long time, because at 17 I gave my life to Christ and that meant I gave him everything that meant. I gave him my heart, my mind, my body, my everything. I just said, God, it’s all yours. I can’t go do something with my body that doesn’t affect my stolen spirit. It doesn’t, I don’t disconnect. And I know I’m kind of, I know I sound like I’m going somewhere else, but I promise I’m bringing it back. And so I, when I gave God that, that meant that I spent almost 10 years waiting on God to bring me that my, my person and within all of that, what I think the reason God had me wait so long was he was deconstructing ideas of what I thought I needed and who I thought I should get.
And finally, at one point, my husband’s about four years younger than I am and we’re dating and we’re about to get really serious. And I called my twin sister and I panicked and I said, Deborah, I can’t, I don’t think I can marry Ben. You know, he’s not a type, a strong visionary leader. Like I always thought I would marry. And she said, you know, and she said, this, it, it, it forever changed my life and I’d held onto it for our 15 years of marriage. She said, you know, have type a guys are, are fun to work with or even great to work with, but they’re not always fun to live with. And what she was doing was she was reminding me that I wasn’t marrying a, a ministry partner. I wasn’t marrying a work part. I was marrying a life partner. And so what Ben and I have together outside of ministry and work and parenting and all those things is a relationship and a life that we are building together.
And as long as we are clear on that together, that’s all that matters. You know, if you were to come into my home right now, you may not know that I’m the a traveler speaker author, cuz I love being a wife and I love being a mom. And that, that doesn’t, I don’t wear that as a badge of, you know, I do this or I do that. It’s the role and the assignment that I do for the day. And it’s the same for him. It’s a dance shell said something so well, wasn’t talking about this specific topic, but he said some things in life aren’t problems to solve, but tensions to manage. And I would say this flow is all about attention to manage. So one ways that I really tried to figure out how to, how to navigate this is number one. I know my husband’s love language.
I mean, that’s critical because if you, your husband’s love just affirmation, you’re getting all the affirmation. Then you’re gonna find ways for him to be affirmed as a human being, not as a male, as a human being. If you know, it’s time, then that means you can’t be on your phone all the time and expect your partner to feel like they’re getting the best of you. You know, if it’s touched and that means you can’t have your kids on your lap all the time, they expect them to get a hug at the end of the day and feel loved. So whatever it is, you figure that out. And then I look at our life as a, like a bank account. So I invest in the bank and when I take withdrawals, I know how much I’m withdrawing. So if I’m on a trip and I’ve loved him with the four boys for 48 hours, I know when I get back, my bank accounts may be on empty or maybe pretty low.
So then I’m gonna set up a walk to go on a walk, maybe get coffee with him, maybe leave him a love message, something that fills that bank account. Cause I know there’s gonna be a moment when I’m gonna take a withdrawal again. So, so, you know, there’s a lot of our, our balance and all of that is making conscious decisions to put the other person first. And one of the thoughts I have is I want Ben to wake up every morning and be glad that he picked me to marry could have picked anybody. I could have picked anybody, but I want you to wake up and go. I’m so glad I picked her, not like, oh my God, this lady’s crazy. He’s had that moment, but not recently. So again, it depends on, you know, my parents are very traditional and classic in that role. We haven’t been, we didn’t set out to be different. We just kind of do what God’s called us to do. And if that’s how it land lands, that’s how it lands. If my husband felt disrespected or not leading in our home, then you better believe it. I would change anything. Because I want to live an old happy life with him. But because of the man I married, I wouldn’t be required to sacrifice like that.
Yeah. But I love how like God has, and this is unique for all of our listeners across the, that he, when he has a specific calling on your life, right. And then leads you to the spouse that he has planned for you, then their personality and everything will compliment that. Right. That’s right. So, or else something will be a little off. So I just love those takeaways though, of just knowing, knowing that love language, what fills him up. Right. And, and then being really cognitive of how you’re investing in that after so much after you have to take out, Right?
Two Halves Don’t Make a Whole (In The Kingdom)
Yes. And it’s not two halves making a whole, it’s two holes that create a relationship. So I can’t have Havilah a purpose and him have Havilah f a purpose. I have to be full of purpose. So that means if he is wanna be full of purpose or have any purpose, that’s on him, he gets to live his own life as a powerful person, but I’m gonna live full of purpose. So a lot of our listeners are feeling like, well, I need my, my spouse to come along. I feel like I’m dragging them. I feel like they’re holding my purpose back. And I would say, you’re waiting for someone to participate so you can live the abundant life. And that is not what Christ came to do. So if somebody’s holding you back to the abundant life, you might wanna look in a mirror because there’s something about the abundant life that God knew was available and possible in any situation.
And Paul talks about that in trials and tribulation. So I totally agree. I also think we have a tendency to either. We just, we, we lack trust to know that God is big enough to know who you married, why you married them. And if it’s not sinking, which I have a lot of friends this happens to, and it happened to us for the first six years of our marriage. It was like, we were at a sink. It was like, I wanna do this and why I wanna do this? And well, am I competing with you? No. Are you competing with me? And, and I see a lot of friends like that, and it’s a sinking matter where you have to figure out what is your rhythm and that rhythm is yours. And if you, if you try to find the rhythm of somebody else’s or mimic somebody else’s, you will get outta sync and you’ll be either exhausted or you’ll fall behind and what go for you. Yeah.
“Powerful Women Empower Women”
That’s so good. That’s so good. And now let’s talk a little bit about your ministry that you and Ben do together, right? Yes . Yes. I love that. I mean, you’re talking about like your purpose as a whole together. So you both were doing this and maybe you guys have a different role to play. Right. But you’re doing this together. I love it. Now you it’s, Truth to Table. Right. And you guys describe it as a modern movement to empower female believers. And I, I think that’s incredible. How do you, how do you feel though, this has really been handled in the past with the church and why do you find it so important to focus on it now?
Well, I think it’s undeniable that there is a mighty group of women in the church that are ready and willing to do what God has called them to do. And I think the idea that somehow they would be discounted because the gender God made them. I, I is a disconnect to really the whole message of the Bible. I don’t think that it’s we are not the same. And I’ll just say that, I know that that’s not, you know, politically correct to say, oh, we are not, but we are not the same. I’ve lived in a full, almost a full female home. I had a twin sister, a mom, and a full Italian dad who was almost a girl. And then I live with five. Like I live with five men. I’ve lived half of my life in girl and half of my life in boy land.
And let me tell you, they are two different worlds. Like no matter what people tell you, and if someone goes, well, I feel like a girl, I would say, well, you actually have never been a girl. You wouldn’t even know what that actually feels like to even have that context. But I, I think what’s most important is that we, there’s some, there’s a mission that I have, which is I’m gonna live a full and abundant life that Christ came to give me wherever I am and that if I live that way, then I’m gonna help other people do that. And that’s gonna in turn, allow other people to have permission. So when I give my myself permission to be who I’m called to be and run in my lane, it gives somebody else permission. When I say I’m not the organic cook, my kids are actually going to be eating probably fast food twice a week.
Like, I’m sorry, like my kids are gonna get vaccinated. They roll around on the floor. It’s it’s bad. Like I begin, I’m not that’s my lane, but if you go, well you know, you have, you have to be in this lane. You gotta be, well, then all of a sudden there’s lines being drawn on the stand. I don’t get to be myself. So I really think it’s important when we figure out who we are and who God’s called us to be, and actually leashes everybody else around us to say, oh cool. You’re not trying to be everything to all people. Neither am I I’m gonna be who God’s called me to be. So this kid kinda came out of that lifestyle. And I didn’t set out to start truth the table that wasn’t my heart. I didn’t set out and go, go down and get the copyright to the, you know, truth the table.
It wasn’t like that. It was so organic. It was on Facebook. I put a one day I decided I was gonna write a Bible study and I’d been hosting very briefly some Bible studies at our church. And I ended up it was a terrible year for us. The recession in 2008 destroyed our entire community. We all lost homes and jobs. And we ended up being, I had my last son back was three months old and I had four babies in five years and we lost our job. And I, here, we have four babies in five years and six years of marriage and we’ve moved nine times. And now we’re gonna try to figure this out. And I remember getting a, U-Haul driving up to Bethel. We had gotten hired on to do to lead a, an organization. And I, I decided I’ve got to think outside the box.
I’m not able to have the church that I had in the place that I had. So how can I do this? And I thought, what if I just throw it on Facebook? And nobody was doing that back then. Now everybody has a book, Bible study and devotionals online, but nobody was doing that. And I thought, let me just throw a group together on Facebook and invite some people long story short, or I threw it up there. I made a promise that I would start that next month. On the first I was gonna do a 25 day Bible study and I threw it up invitation, own open. Anybody can, I thought 50 women would join. By the time I went back that evening, I had 500 people signed up for this Bible study and I thought, well, I, I better have a plan. So I went to my husband.
I said, Hey, babe, I don’t know. This is like not good, but in about 10 days from now, I have 500 people doing the Bible line with me. And he said, what’s your plan? I said, well, I’m gonna set all four of my kids down, feed them breakfast. And I’m gonna sit and preach the word for 20 minutes every morning. He’s like, that’s a terrible idea. What’s your second idea. I said, well, I’m gonna medicate my kids and lock ’em in the room. He’s like, yeah, I can’t legally let you do that either. So we ended up like borrowing a camera and he filmed me. We threw it up online and we started that by. So it was 6,000 women. And we did that for multiple years. And every January we host a live three 20. Now it’s a 15 day study. Our intention spans are getting, but about 25,000 women from around the world, join us every January at my kitchen table to do a study. And this year is discovering and activating your spiritual gifts. That’s what this whole thing is about, is how to activate and discover your spiritual gifts. That was a long answer, Crissy. I’m sorry.
No, Totally fine. I love it. I love it so much. I mean, and I I’ve been a part of those Bible studies that you’ve done and they have, you know, every time you get to be a part of it, you just get a, I walk away with another nugget, you know, to apply it. And especially as you talk about women, just kind of like staying in the lane and the purpose that God has for each keep on reinforcing that. And, and now going into like the spiritual giftings. And then, and I know recently I’ve listened to some of your episodes have had to do with like finding significance, you know? And I think that’s really important that we find like so many women are competing for significance sometimes in our culture or they can’t find it where they think they’re gonna find it. So you are. I just, I, I really do respect everything that you’re doing, because it’s like, whatever you have or no, you just give it away. Right. And just help the next woman just do it even better what they’ve been doing before. And I love that. And I’m so sorry, Scott. I really am taking over this podcast.
I Really, I just, in case people wonder, I am still here. He’s still here. Crissy carry on.
Okay. Well I do have a couple more questions before I let, let Scott join us more, but you’re
Gonna let me join. Thank you very much.
The Cost of Family and Ministry
Well, I have a new friend, Scott. Okay. And Dave, I’m never gonna let Dave come back. This is too much fun, honestly, but okay. But your life is busy. Okay. And like how many women? I don’t care if you’re married or not, or you have kids or not. It’s like, who is a busy woman, everyone. They’re just like, yeah. And I could relate. I mean, I’m a full-time mom too, and I have three kids and then I, I homeschool part-time and you though, you travel, and then this business screen contact. I know you too. You’re also in a new role at Bethel.
I just became the women’s pastor and I I’m like, how did that happen? And so yeah, I’m doing that as well. I, I, yeah, I think it was a weak moment. I’m kidding. I’m it was, it was what God had, but you know, again, my dream has always been, I wanted, I, my dad was on the road again. I grew up in a home where I saw my dad on the road. And one of the pain points that I saw with people that were on the road or traveling a lot in ministry was that they raised ministry orphans, and they had ministry widows. It was people that weren’t raised or weren’t spoused because they had given their whole life to ministry. And I thought to myself, God, I do not want to raise ministry orphans. Now. I didn’t know what that meant.
That meant it was gonna take a tremendous amount of sacrifice. I thought it would be like, that means God’s gonna provide the private jet that we’re gonna get on with the people. And I’m gonna, my kids are be my lap and I’m gonna be drinking hot COA with them. No, that meant we were gonna have to live in the same house for nine years in a three bedroom house. It meant that like with everybody piled in together, it meant that we were gonna have to take extra money and spend it on flights to bring our kids with us. It meant that we were gonna live in hotel rooms with, with six of us. And I would be getting up in the morning and trying to get into the bathroom and try to get ready and go preach to thousands of people. And I was sacrificing to have them with us ‘cause it was my value and my husband value to have them with us.
Now that doesn’t look like everybody. But I, I think it’s really important that what we, it, you know, expect we experience. So it means that we, we set out with intention. So one thing that’s really helped me along the way Crissy is I never just go off the seat of my pants. I don’t just go, wow. January’s what should I do? What sounds good? Like, no, I’m always intentional. And I, I’m not a type a person that might surprise you. I’m actually a pretty like entertainment driven person. And so I’ll settle my calendar and I work in quarters and I work in color coordination and I put in, in the first quarter, every important date in red. So birthdays holidays things I have to be at those go in red all purple is a getaways or some kind of I’m leaving my house and sleeping somewhere else for fun.
Prioritizing the Important Things
All ministries and green all blue is made appointments. And so I do all that and I take, I take a step back and I look at my calendar and I go, okay, do I have fun planned in these moments? Do I have my kids planned in these moments? Because if you just let everything pile in, you won’t have balance. And so that was critical, especially when you have littles to go, okay, I see that I have five ministry or work things in a row. And the, I only have one vacation in eight months. So wonder I hate my life. So what can I do? And you know, I need something to look forward to. So what if we call up our friend who lives, you know, in the other, the other city, and let’s just go to a staycation at they’re home for a couple days, or let’s just do a road trip on a Saturday.
So it’s really important that balance. And then you, you just, so it’s not like this is what we always do forever. Every quarter, every Havilah f a year, we readjust, we sit down and we go, is this working what isn’t working? And we always do that on the flight home, on the flight there, we get a game plan, always get a game plan, wherever you’re going, family vacation, the holidays are coming up. Holidays are, you know, how are we gonna do this? How much media do we want our kids to have? What kind of date nights do we want this season? How important is going to church? You gotta really ask yourself those questions. Those things don’t just fall into place. And then you readjust and go, okay, this isn’t working or this really worked well. And then you start to reassess and I call it on ramping and off ramping.
So when you on ramp, you are, are leaving. That’s very important how you set that up. And then when you land, that’s very important in both those, whether you’re a working mom, who’s coming home, whether you know, you’re coming home from work and it just means you’re walking from your living room to the back to the kitchen. It’s very important. All of those are very critical. In fact, Ben and I had most of our tension when it was in intros and outros. That’s where our tension always lies because someone is in charge and trying to figure it out and being interrupted and missing something. And so if you can figure that out and if you could write the book, maybe Scott or Crissy, you guys can write the book on intro and outros. That would be amazing.
Well, really it’s a fascinating, the conversation is I, I just have a question. Crissy, could I ask maybe a question? You have permission? I feel like, I feel like I’m stepping in. No, no. To watch you guys talk, it’s incredible content, incredible conversation, but you’re talking about your calendar is setting things up. You’ve written a book called I do bound and you even talk in that book about Jesus setting boundaries to keep a healthy life. Can you just say what that means for people that are listening? They’re thinking about the holidays coming up. They’re thinking about people coming over. Yes.. Now they’re overwhelmed with color coded calendars that you’ve got them introduced. How do people set good healthy boundaries?
Boundaries – Even Jesus Had Them
Such a great question, Scott. And you know, I wrote “I Do Boundaries” because I landed in a counselor’s office after being diagnosed with postpartum depression after my second son. And she was a minister’s wife, minister’s kid who was well into her adulthood and said, Hey, if you want longevity I can teach you how to be here for a long time, but your whole life is not set up for longevity. So if you want to come sit with me every Friday for an hour and a half, and you’re gonna sit with six other women that you are only going to be allowed to know their first names, they’re all influential women in the city that have very intense jobs, just like you do. But I wanna teach you guys about boundaries and what she began to show me was that boundaries is how we protect what matters most to us.
So boundaries, aren’t just having a strong, no, or being, getting people away from us or not having to do everything. Boundaries are to say what’s important to me. And how can I set up borders around that to protect the Bible says and lack self control is like a city with walls that are broken down as a man who lack self control. So I began to realize there were three specific things God held me responsible for are my attitudes, choice and feelings. And then I began to do understand about how Jesus has operated boundaries. Remember in revelations, he said, knock. And he says, if you don’t open the door, I’m gonna barge in cuz I’m God I’m gonna do what I need to do. No, no. He says knock. And if you open the door, I will in, he was demonstrating a boundary right away, which was I’m.
Applying Boundaries to Our Lives in a Healthy Way
And again, he does it, even in our salvation walk, I I’m not, your free will, I’ll let you do your thing. And so as we go into a holidays and it’s one of my favorite topics, cuz I felt like that was when I always lost myself in the holidays was like, I always had great boundaries until I got to my parents’ house. And I was immediately 11 years old. And, and what I found was you have to set up your boundaries around your core values and those have to be set, not in the middle, but way ahead of time and you have to get good at communicating those. So what you wanna do and we’re right close to the holidays. You wanna sit down and go, what do I wanna protect in this season? That’s the question you’re gonna ask yourself, what do I want to protect mostly.
Am I gonna protect my mom’s attitude about how I’m raising my kids? Am I gonna protect what my uncle thinks about my job? Am I gonna protect what my husband, what is trying to please his parents? Or am I gonna protect my kids? That they get to see a peaceful mom? Right? Am I gonna protect that? Jesus is a center of the season for me. I don’t know what it is for you, but then you’re gonna set it up. You’re gonna say, okay, if that’s important to me, then how do I structure the holidays around? What’s important to me. So, okay. I could be manage two holidays with the family, but I can’t imagine four, four different days. So how do I unlock? Okay. I can keep my piece for two but not four. So I’m gonna let everybody know, Hey, we’re doing things a little different this year.
Of course we can’t wait to be with you. We start with positive, but then let everyone know. You’re not asking, is it okay? You’re letting them know you are an adult. Come on guys. We are adults. And we get to say what works for us. And yes, usually people won’t like that initially, but again, we’re reeducating them on what we’re protecting. And again, no, one’s gonna feel bad about not protecting the things that matter to you and it’s not the responsibility. So I always looking it as, okay, God, what if you called me to you? How can I honor you in the best way? And how can I set those around me up for, for success while staying within my boundaries. So we wanna get so good at boundaries that the people around us don’t even know that we’re operating in them. They, it’s just kind and gracious and compassionate, but also clear and not we don’t change it for anybody.
I love that because those things and those things that we should ask ourselves before going into any kind of busy season, I think that always gets overlooked. I’ve heard so many women say like they get overwhelmed. They’ve lost all sense of boundaries, especially when they say, oh my goodness, I have to be everything to everyone. You know? And it’s like, no, no you don’t. You know, so just kind of change that perspective and you know, those questions that you ask yourself that you’re saying and, and to prioritize, what’s important to you. I love that. That’s some it’s really insightful and that’s good. I do have one more question unless Scott. Yes. Do you, is it okay?
Crissy take it, take it away. okay. Well you’ve already given us a lot of practical, a lot of practical advice. I love it. Some really good key takeaways. I mean, in this podcast, we always want to our focus is how we can help others unlock their full potential of influence wherever God has placed them. And as we’re speaking a lot to, you know, women here, I mean, I think that men can use this advice too, but what’s some like really good practical, I think key takeaways that the listeners can put into practice like to date, like when they listen, like to gain control of their life and their schedule and emotions. And I loved even how you touched on like those three things you can control. I’ve I learned that a long time ago too. People think that they can’t control their attitude.
Identity vs Assignment
Oh, but you can’t control how I feel. Oh, you can anyway. But yeah, if you have some good key takeaways that we can, they can walk away with after listening today?
You know, I, I think the main thing is, is who are you waiting for to opt, to function and to participate so you can live the abundant life and really be clear because if you’re waiting for someone else other than yourself, you’re missing something within, within it. You’re not, you’re not fully living a powerful life. And so you really wanna go through that and you wanna start to figure out again, we talked about this a little bit, but you wanna figure out who has God called me to be? And that doesn’t mean do so this is how I like to relate. It is you have assignments and you have an identity. And both of those are very different. So my identity is what I bring to every room that I go into. It is maybe for me a it’s a problem solving it’s energy. It’s joy.
Maybe it’s prophetic. I don’t know what it is for you, but that’s, those are what I bring. So if I’m on staff at a church, or if I’m over here writing a book, or if I’m over here at my kid’s soccer game, I’m gonna bring joy problem solving, you know, encouragement. That’s who I am. That’s my identity. That’s who have is on the earth. My assignment might be soccer game. It might be, you know, coaching. It might be, I don’t know what that part is, but that allows me. So I don’t lose myself. So what we often think is that if I can get into my assignment, my identity will figure itself out. Mm-Hmm. When I wanna say that is not true. How many people do we know? Think I’ll figure my identity out. When I become a white, then I’ll just know who I am and what I want to do, or I’ll figure my identity out after my wife and a mom.
And then you see moms going, I’m having an identity crisis. I don’t know what I’m doing. Or you see women that haven’t been married or, or have haven’t chosen to have kids. They’re like, well, am I missing something? And I wanna say, no, you’re not. You’re not missing anything because ultimately whoever you are is actually who God’s called you to be in the environment. And you’re gonna take that everywhere you go. So I think you can invest in yourself. But also know, I always said this, my twenties was about learning and gathering information about myself. My thirties was editing that’s me. That’s not me. Okay. I like that. I don’t like that. And my forties is like, I know who I am and I who I’m not, and I’m never gonna do that. And I, and I feel like it’s going more and more to like, I’m never.
And I remember one time, my, my counselor, she was so kind and I spent two years almost in her office. And at one point she just decorating. She she’d bring all these little Christmas things she made and she, at Christmas time she would give us them or sell ’em. And I thought, you know what, I’m gonna build a real with her more than this atmosphere. And, and, and so I said to her, Hey, I’m painting my house. And I’m trying to pick out colors. In my living room, would you, would you wanna stop by? And maybe I’m gonna pick out a color and she looks at me and she goes, no, I, that doesn’t sound fun at all. rush. Like I have bear my soul to you. And she’s like, now that doesn’t sound like me. And I thought at first I thought, oh, that sounds so mean like, wow, I didn’t like, I was just trying to be nice. And then I thought I immediately respected her because I thought she didn’t lead me on didn’t play phone tag. We didn’t, I, she didn’t get there. And it felt awkward or I, I just immediately knew where she was at. So I would say learning just to tell the truth, not just tell your truth, but speak. The truth is really, really important.
Yeah. Have that your wisdom is amazing. And just listening since the whole spirit in, through and around you. And could I just ask you to take a moment to listen to the holy spirit and just our friends that are part of our podcast right now, they’re trying to live their lives in balance. They’re trying to find truth, reality, who there are identity. And if you could just pray what the holy spirit praise through you for our friends that are part of our time right now, I just think it would be such a Blessing.
I’d love to.
Closing Prayer of Encouragement
Lord. I thank you for everyone. That’s listening through the sound waves today. And Lord, we know that you are a God that does things on purpose and you set up our lives in your perfect timing. And I believe that the fact that they’re listening to this podcast right now at this moment is evidence that you’re doing something in them around this topic. And so I asked that we would surrender to the leading that you’re leading us in a freedom. And we, I asked that you would begin to teach us what our identity is outside of what we do outside of our assignment. And I asked that we’d be able to next season as we pop into the holidays and the chaos of everything that we would take a step back. And we would begin to respect not only those around us, but ourself and say, okay, God, who is the man and woman that you’ve called me to be in this season. And I asked that we would not bow down to the fear of man, but we would down to what you think and what you’ve called us to. I pray for courage in a season that feels chaotic. And I pray for clarity and peace and joy in, in the depths of each of us in Jesus mighty name. Amen.
How to Connected to Havilah
If you could just tell us how to connect with your material your books, and just share it with our audience.
I would love that. So, and you guys come find me, I’m on social media at Havilah Cunnington. And you can find me on Facebook or Instagram, but if you wanna find Truth to Table it’s truthtotable.com and that has all my resources, Bible studies there’s courses on how to write a book, how to preach a message, how per message, all of those are big eCourses. And then I also have a podcast myself called Home with Havilah, and that’s more of more of a relaxed experience of just being in my life. But more than that, just come say hi to me. I’m there almost every day. And I’m just so honored to be here. What an incredible group and community you have. I can tell just by our conversation, what kind of community and what kind of efforts you’re putting out.
Yeah. Thank you so much. And Crissy amazing to be with you today. Thanks for taking over. It was a joy
Thanks for letting me, I don’t know if I’ll give this back to Dave. I like this seat right here.