Misty Phillip is using her gifts and her calling to bring people together. In 2020, she hosted two events–one live, right before the lockdown–and the second as a virtual event. We talked about the differences and similarities between live and virtual events, Misty’s personal journey of faith, and cultivating community.
About Misty Phillip
Misty is a dreamer and a doer who believes we are all here for a reason and that we are created for a purpose. She encourages people to use their story to give God glory. Misty Phillip is a podcaster, speaker, author, and entrepreneur who is passionate about helping you spark your soul message.
Founder of Spark Media which consists of the Spark Christian Podcast Conference, Spark Now Summit, and the Spark Collective. She is the host of the popular By His Grace podcast. Misty inspires others through her leadership, speaking, and mastermind groups. She currently serves as the Houston Connect Leader for Christian Women In Media. Misty is the author of the best-selling Bible Study, The Struggle is Real: But So is God and Spark Podcast Planner 2020.
MistyPhillip.com and SparkMedia.Ventures
Connect with Misty on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest
Welcome to Episode 58 of the life and mission podcast. I'm Kay Helm, and my guest today is misty Philip. Misty is a dreamer and a doer who believes we are all here for a reason, and that we are created for a purpose. She's the founder of spark media, which includes the spark Christian podcasts conference, the spark now summit and the spark collective. She is the host of the popular by His grace podcast. And she leads mastermind groups and serves as the Houston Connect leader for Christian women in media. Misty is also the author of the best selling Bible study, the struggle is real, but so is God. You know, a lot of times when we talk about calling, we think in terms of a vocation, this is my like, I'm God is calling me to a job or to a ministry and to do this one thing or to do this one type of activity. But I want you to hear as misty tells about how the Lord has shaped her life and led her through some different seasons. The Bible says that his gifts in his calling are irrevocable. So those gifts and the calling are with you, no matter the season, no matter what you are doing. So how do you apply those gifts in that calling in the season that you're in? That's a part of our discussion. Also, we talked about putting on events because this is something that misty did a great job of during 2020. no less. Okay, a live event and a virtual event. Here's my conversation with misty Phillip.Misty:
Misty, Philip, I'm so happy to have you here on the life admission podcast. Thank you, Kay, I'm so excited to be here with you today. I did not know you at the beginning of 2020. And so here we are at the beginning of 2021. And I met you because of a couple of events that you led over, over the year, the spark Christian podcast conference,Kay:
which you did, how many times?Misty:
Yeah, well, the the in person live conference we did once in February, and two weeks later, the world shut down. So the end of February and you know, by God's grace, we were able to get that imperson event in everybody was high fiving and hugging. And, you know, we're just like meeting people from all over. We had a guy come from Korea and a lady come from Mexico, and we had people from all across the United States. And it was just so amazing. And then, you know, the pandemic hit. So all the things, right,Kay:
I want to talk to you a little bit later on about the how and the why of the spark conference, and why you ended up doing it twice. And the difference between the two. But I wanted to start if you could give us a little bit of of your story, because I know your story is so much about leaning on God and depending on him, and you've accomplished so much. And I know it's tempting, I know, at least for me, and probably for a lot of us that are listening. It's tempting to look at someone who's accomplished a lot of things who's getting things done even in 2020 and can say, Well, I can't because of whatever or she's she's Superwoman. But I know you you've got a calling and gifts that you get things done. That's part of your DNA. But it's it's not been easy. It's not been an easy road. And I know there's a just a such a strong encouraging message in that.Misty:
Yeah. So you're right. It's not been an easy, easy road, for sure. And for the last, you know, before I started writing, and speaking and doing all of those things, I had a career back when my kids were first born, and I was like, a career driven woman, and God got ahold of my heart and was like, No, that's not what I want you to do. And he called me to homeschool, to come home and raise my boys and be a stay at home mom. And you know, at that point, I had no idea how things were going to work out because I was making a lot of money. And we were going to go to a single income, all of those things. And then the reason that I quit my job to stay home was because my son, who was a baby at the time started having grand mal seizures. And he seized continuously over the course of a few days until he was almost in a constant seizure. His brain had swollen, and you know, he's 22 today, and we're still dealing with ramifications of that incident. And so I left my amazing job to come home. And that is, I think, the most important job in the world and also the hardest job in the world, you know, to raise other humans and to do it to make them productive citizens and, and to love the Lord and so but that's where I lived my life down. was for my family. And those days at home were not easy having all boys homes, them having a special needs son with all of the therapy that he needed and hospital visits and he was also born with club feet. So his feet were upside down and backwards when he was born. And I mean, so he started out, like having surgeries continuously threw out his childhood, we had to fly to different cities to go to different hospital. I mean, just crazy. And in there, you know, I lost several babies, I miscarried, I had a tubal pregnancy that nearly killed me. And then when I turned 40, I found out that I was pregnant, we were so excited. We were like, it was a surprise blessing. And our son was stillborn at about six months. And so you know that those were some good years, but also really, really hard years. And so, when my oldest son went to college, I started asking God, like, what's, what's next for me? Because I went to college with him. And they said, okay, mom, your job is done now. And I was like, Oh, lordy, I'm gonna be in trouble. If I don't find something else to do, I'm going to smother these boys. And I knew that, that that was not a good idea. So I get to the point where you got to let them go. And I started, I started speaking first, and started sharing the story of our son, who was diagnosed with trisomy 18. Because the doctors wanted us to abort him. And they did. They were like, he's not gonna live. He's incompatible with life, you might as well, you know. And we were like, No, he's fearfully and wonderfully made. And God has a purpose and a plan for his life, no matter how long he lives, and that you started to share that story. And I was asked to speak for Texas, right to life. And I knew God was calling me to speak. But I was a little afraid. And so I would speak and then I would come back home. And then I started writing and blogging, and the rest is kind of history.Kay:
And I would encourage, and all the links are going to be in the show notes. I really encourage you guys to check it out. Because there's a lot of just in looking through your your blog and reading some of the posts there. You go through a lot. It's not just you also you have other bloggers in theirs, as well. And it's just life. It's life. But there's so much glory given to God. And just, if you need somebody to walk with you, it's a good check out Misty's blog.Misty:
Yeah, life is hard. I mean, it really is. But God is good. And he is faithful through it all. And we need each other, we need people to help us to get through. Right, right. And you've written a book, as well, based out of that came out of all of this, right? Yeah, the struggle is real, but so is God. It's a six week Bible study on what it means to be an overcomer. So when I told my husband, I really feel like I'm supposed to write a book. And I was like, I could write about this, or I can write about this. And you know, I was given him some ideas. And he was like, your whole life story is a story of overcoming, because struggles for me started very young when my brother passed away, and just the family struggles that we had as a result of that. And so I started, I started studying that word overcomer. In the Bible, overcoming its Nikkei in the Greek was is where we get Nike, you know, just do it. So I learned so, so much. And I started the Bible study in Genesis, and we end in Revelation. And we go through kind of the whole Bible because we start because the story starts in the garden. And we have to understand that that's where our struggle begins. Our struggle is sin, and it's the age old, it's, it's the Battle of the ages, right. And that's something that we must overcome, we have to overcome in our life. And we do that through Christ because he's overcome. And so he's like, the middle of the Bible study, because it's all about him. And then we look at Old Testament overcomers and New Testament overcomers. And it ends with the promises in Revelation, because there are specific promises to the overcomers. So it's really all about overcoming through Christ, by being obedient to Him, and exercising our faith and seeing, seeing the Bible as as really that one story. I love it when you can tie all of that together, like in your journey as a communicator. So you've had I'm looking at your story. And then you have this wonderful gift for bringing people together. And for just communicating. You tell stories. Well, you You're right. Wow.Kay:
You're you hold the people together organized. Well. Can you talk about that calling you had that career shift? Calling and giftings? And how those those work together?Misty:
Yeah. Well, I want to back up just a little bit. Because when I first wanted to write and speak, I asked my husband, I said, Can I go to sleep, which is a conference for writers and speakers put on by proverbs 31 ministries. I was like, it's kind of expensive, and I'm going to be gone for a week. And he was like, absolutely. And when I went, I went with a friend, and then met some other friends in the airport, who are all going. And when we came back from the conference, we started a mastermind group, because I knew that I needed people in the journey, right? That mastermind group has been been, you know, going on, like for four years. And so I've always gathered people, and I love to throw a party. I know that hospitality is in my gifting. I love to cook and make things look beautiful. I love to decorate my home, I went to Fashion College of all things. So I started to pray about where do all these giftings line up. So when I prayed specifically, because I was working on my next book, and it wasn't going well. And my husband said, Baby, you're just flattered that you have an agent that wants to work with you. And I don't think that's what you're supposed to do. And I knew he was right, because it wasn't. Because when we're in the flow with the Lord, like we know when that's right. And so I went to him and I prayed, where does my gifting and my calling line up in this season. So it was my youngest son, he was about to graduate. It was my final year of homeschooling I wanted to finish. Well, I also knew that I'd love to gather people. And so I prayed that prayer. And when I did, I felt the Lord say, podcast conference. And I'm like, like, what, Where'd that come from? And I started to look, and I'm like, there is no Christian podcast conference. So there are writing and speaking conferences that might talk about, somebody will do a talk on podcasting, or they'll have a breakout, but no one was doing a podcast conference for Christians by Christians. And so God gave me this vision to bring the best of what was happening in the podcast industry, to the Christian community. So I had a lot of writing, and speaking friends that I had made in that journey. And a lot of them were saw what I was doing with podcasting, and they were really interested. And they wanted to, to do that. And so that's how spark was born. It was born out of me seeking God and asking him, if this is not what you want me to do, what is next for me? Where does the name spark come from? It all came from the Lord, really, and truly did. I sat down with a notebook and I was praying, and I knew I started like, what am I going to need God and I was like, I need a name. And he gave me the idea. And it was really cool, because there were three people after I announced spark that reached out to me, because it was at the time of the Hebrew New Year and the word that was for the year 570, or 57. ATM sorry, was the word that essentially meant voice or Spark was like, This is bigger than I can even understand.Kay:
We're looking at each other on video on a zoom call, and misty has the word spark these letters up on her bookshelf over her head. And as when I'm looking at her face when she's speaking Spark, I was just thinking spark and speak, are so close. And I don't think that's my chance. Right? Yeah. I just think it we're in a season right now where God's calling so many people to speak. And that that's why maybe imposter syndrome is such a big issue in the Christian community.Misty:
Yeah, you know, I think that right now, where God has me and my mission, my true mission right now is to encourage all of the voices in Christian podcasting. Not that my voice is important, but that other people sharing their story. And so that is the mission that I'm on is because I feel that podcasting at this day and time is so important on the kingdom calendar. And more important, I think, then we can understand because our messages can reach people literally all over the world. And when we're sharing encouraging things, we're sharing this scripture, we're actually fulfilling the Great Commission without ever leaving, and it's amazing to me when I look at my stats on my podcast, and I see downloads from all over the world, and that was the other thing I was like what would happen if If I gathered a bunch of people together, how much more powerful would that be? And the beautiful thing that I've seen is I've seen all of these podcasters become friends, they've been interviewed on each other's podcast, they're listening to each other's podcasts, they're reviewing, they're downloading all of the things. And, you know, we're really, God created us to be in community. And it's just a beautiful thing when we use our gifts and talents to do the thing that God has called me to do. And I actually at Spark, had a pastor who is there who has a podcast, and he said, I want you to know, this is your thing like this, is you keep doing this, because you have done this so beautifully. And and what I didn't know at the time was he actually is kind of like a life and mission coach that takes people on adventures and excursions, and kind of helps them form their mission and clarity. And he spoke that into me at the event. And so it's been really cool to just kind of walk that out, even in the year of 2020.Kay:
Yeah, well, speaking of 2020, well, first of all, the thing that I just want to say about the spark conference, I didn't go to the live one that you had in February, but I did go to the virtual one that you had in November. And just that spirit of collaboration that gets not coming, you know, ever Yeah, okay, we're all in the podcasting space. And we could look at each other as as competition, but it was more about collaboration. It was about, hey, we're all on the same team, how can we figure out how to help each other? It's just such a community there, those things really don't happen by accident.Misty:
Yeah, you know, it was my heart, the whole goal of that particular event, because I did that in about six weeks, I threw that together, I saw that, you know, we were in the pre election season, and I knew that it was going to be messy. I just knew, no matter what happened, it was going to be messy. And I had at that point, had actually started to kind of get a little weary, and burned out and discouraged, myself. And I was talking to some of my other friends. And they were feeling the same way. I mean, 2020 is just been hard. And when you're constantly pouring yourself out, as a communicator, it's you know, you got to make sure that you're feeding yourself. And so I was like, God wants us to finish this year strong. We're called to live the abundant life. And so I was like, let's just throw this event together, get people together, remind them that God's in control, no matter what happens, and we need to stay on mission for him. And so that's kind of why that was birthed. And it did come together in such a beautiful way. The way I like to look at it is God's pie. You know, there's a slice for everybody, because he owns the cattle on 1000 Hills, and it's all his and so if we come to whatever we're doing very open handed, that allows us like the his blessings, just flow. And so yeah, I love that I get to encourage other people in what in their calling.Kay:
Yeah, yeah. And that's exactly what it did was all kinds of everything from technical information to worship, types of worshiping together and prayer and, and everything in between, it was really a wonderful experience. So I did want to ask you to always love to give people things in this podcast to equip them for things that they may be doing in their ventures. You did the live event. And then you did it again, as a virtual event. And so I wanted to to address some of the differences between putting together a live event putting together a virtual event. I know some some of us are looking at things that maybe we've done in the past. And we're saying, How much longer do we have to wait, maybe you don't have to wait, maybe you can reimagine the thing that you do and still keep those important parts intact. So if you could speak to that.Misty:
Yeah. So while I was planning the conference, God put it on my heart to start a community, like an ongoing training, and community too. So I've got that where I meet with with podcasters. Every week, we do zoom calls, where, you know, we're troubleshooting what they're working on and, and how it's going and we share wins, and we do teaching and training. And so I got to kind of prepared me already. And that became such a source of encouragement throughout 2020 because every week I was meeting with other people that had a similar interest in focus and, and so that was helpful. And then Chris, Kermit soce of podfest asked me, which is I think where we initially adopted He asked me to do a spark track. And so I did. And it was amazing. And I, it was a lot in that it was really cool because no one had to travel could have these pre recorded messages. And we had the actor from the chosen, who plays Jesus, Jonathan Rumi was there. So he was in California. I had Mike McDonald from the from the Bible project, you know, he was up in Oregon, I was able to gather all of these people from around the country, and put these videos together. And then we just played the videos through the conference. And so that just really opened my eyes because no one had to travel, they still were able to come together. And the community part of that conference was really great. I know, we talked about just being able to connect with other people, which that's the thing that I think we we've all needed, this year of 2020 was connection, you're managing a lot more with a live event, you have a venue, and food, and all of those kinds of things that you have to work around, especially the like, I couldn't start spark 2020 in praise and worship, because of the hotel, that I chose to have that and I chose a hotel, because I knew I had people coming in from literally all over the world. And I also had people coming from the podcasting industry. And so I wanted to set it up as a professional event. But it constrained me and we actually we outgrew that facility at the first time because literally standing room only. But so those types of things kind of constrain, you know what you're able to do. But thinking through like the speakers and the flow of the event, there is a rhythm that you have to create with a virtual event that is similar to a live event, you have to think about people's energy, you know, do we have breaks all of those things. And the one thing that I incorporated was that community aspect, we broke into zoom rooms. And to me, I think that is what people really like they want the training, but really more than the training, they want that they want the connection.Kay:
Yeah, that's so true. And I was at that second the virtual spark event. And we met at the pod fest event, which broke a Guinness world record for the largest podcast conference. It was like a really long day, like the largest virtual podcast, but it was huge. And people from all over, it was great. Everybody was on this app talking. And then with with your conference was Spark, those zoom breakout rooms were great. So we'd go into a room. And everybody would go around and introduce themselves and say what they were doing with their podcast and where they were at. And then we would go into another Zoom Room and do it again. And it was just such a wonderful and I'm taking notes like crazy, like oh, ask this person to be on the show and ask this person to be a guest. So we have a huge lineup of great guests for the year and a lot of them originated right there at Spark. So but just that connection was such a huge part of it. You know, you go to some conferences, and it's very clear that this conference, the purpose is to sell this up somebody program. Yeah, you know, but but it was like you were just saying, Here, have this have this. This will help. So thank you for that.Misty:
What is next for you?Misty:
Yeah, so you know, we have it's hard to plan live events right now, for 2021. But I've already sold tickets to my 2021 conference with no date and no venue. And I have people coming to me saying, what are we doing? And you know, I'm waiting on the Lord. But there are some interesting partnerships that I'm forming. So I'm actually going to take spark to other people's events. And we're going to do some things with some collaborations. And so that's really cool. We'll probably do a combination of virtual and live events as well. And, and then in my spare time, I am working on my next book that is all about chasing your dreams and following God's lead. And I'm really excited. I am working with that agent. And it this is just a dream come true for me. So but I'm taking it slow, because I know that that's a process and writing a book is hard. For anybody who has the desire to write a book. It's not easy, but God works in you while you're doing that. And sometimes there's more life. You have to live before you can write the thing, so I'm just taking it, it took me three years to write my other Bible study, just because my life was so busy and finding time to just sit in the chair and write. So I have a feeling, you know, this might take a while, but I'm okay. Because I'm about the journey. And so we're, you know, we're writing the book and doing conferences, and just having a good time still teaching and training people gathering people every week, to encourage them in the journey through masterminds and training. And so and then my podcast you Yeah, so the By His Grace podcast. I'm really excited about that, and what that's gonna look like. So yeah, lots of fun things. And I guess what I would just say to your listeners is, if God has called you to do something, do it to the glory of God, your life may not look like my life, but God has given me so much God saved me, because I was an absolute train wreck, and I was destined for hell. And he stopped me in my tracks and turned my life around, and gave me an incredible family. And just so many blessings, that I just want to run my race well, so that at the end of my life, he says, well done good and faithful servant. And that's why we're all here. And so whatever it is that he's calling you to do it, you may never write a book, you may never start a conference, but do what He has called you to do. Because we are all here for specific purposes. And once we start walking in those works, that he's planned for us, there is nothing like it. Being on an adventure with Jesus is the best thing ever. When I was starting to plan SPARK, I would just come with my little notebook that I started it every day, and I'm like, okay, God, what are we going to do today? And I would call somebody and they would say, Have you talked to this person that would lead to this call that would lead to this and it just got open doors that I could not have? I had no idea what I was doing. But I did it with God, and He knows everything. So how cool is that?Kay:
Yes, yeah. Yeah, if you're gonna get to go blind, go blind with God. Right? You can just walk, grab his hand and get going. Yeah. Yeah, that's awesome. Misty, thank you so much. You've given us a lot to chew on there. And just it's such Always a pleasure. And whenever you get to the next book, when your next book is ready to roll, I want to make sure that we have your back and we'll talk about that. And I will certainly see you at the next SPARK conference, wherever and whenever that may be awesome.Misty:
I can't wait.Kay:
That's it for this week. I'll be back in two more weeks with another episode. In the meantime, I would really appreciate it if you would leave a review especially in iTunes, you just go to the program. You scroll down to the bottom where the reviews are and you'll see a little button there for leave a review and it will really help if you'll just tell people Hey, honestly, this is why I listened to this podcast. This is what I enjoy about it. And of course we love those five stars, but let me know how you feel about the podcast. It's my hope that this podcast will encourage you and help equip you for the things that God has for your life. As we always say find your voice tell your story. Change the world.