Remember the 80’s sitcom “My Two Dads?” Interesting premise, both male leads had a relationship with the young star’s deceased mother – (I’ll give you a moment to try and process that) and instead of descending into a contentious paternity battle to prove the “real” dad, both men take on a fatherly role, and they all live happily ever after for three seasons.
Things were so much more harmonious in the 80’s, but I digress…
My two Mikes could not be more different, though they do share a few common traits. Mike #1 is careful, meticulous, and calm – Mike #2 is bold, fearless, and infinitely energetic. Both are big-hearted, loyal and dedicated – lovers of hunting, pick up trucks, and the great outdoors.
Mike #1 is my husband – the man I married in 2004. Our paths first crossed in 1998 – the site of our initial meeting a dumpy duplex dubbed “The Alamo.” I was a divorced bartender, mobile DJ, and single parent of a sweet four year old girl when Mike Huray arrived to install a shower at the request of my former roommate. She’d known him for years, and my introduction to the toolbox toting guy was brief. Still, it was an important harbinger to a plan God would reveal in His perfect timing. The shower got finished and I went on with my life. I wouldn’t see Mike Huray again for five long years.
A lot happened in that time. I’d left my bartending job, shelved the DJ gigs, and landed a career in television broadcasting. My father had succumbed to alcoholic liver failure just nine months earlier, and my alcohol-fueled binges had finally brought me to my knees. I’d met Jesus in surrender and desperation on the morning of August 22, 2003. He’d mercifully removed my addiction, and I hadn’t looked back.
Three short weeks following my quit date, I’d been reinvented as a now-sober anchor/reporter for KDLH-TV – and was trudging from the TV station to a building across the street. I’d been promised an enthralling scoop there – but what I found in reality was a bunch of people being smacked in the faces with pies. Ah, a little filler piece, maybe a kicker – something fluffy to show we didn’t just report on car crashes and tragedies.
I hadn’t even wanted to do the stupid story. I resisted, I whined, I asked “WHY ME?” But I respected the producer’s directive and hustled across the street. God – in His perfect timing – would see to it I didn’t miss out on the story of my life.
Looking back almost eighteen years, I have to steal a line from my “other” Mike – (who I’ll introduce in a moment) and squeal – “WHAT ARE THE ODDS?” What are the odds that as I stood on the sidewalk, feigning interest and mentally preparing a swift exit once I scored a sound bite – that the first person I approached (entirely unrecognizable I might add – thanks to the gobs of whipped cream running down his face) was Mike Huray, that guy I’d met just briefly back in 1998?
Do you honestly think this orchestration of events was random? Or luck of the draw? I mean, really, what are the odds? The truth is – God, in his infinite goodness, mercy, and love, knew I’d shelved alcohol for good. I was now ready for the man He’d always had in mind.
After Mike and I were reacquainted, the Holy Spirit (who I hadn’t met yet) opened one door after another, and showed me through numerous promptings and circumstances Mike Huray would soon be my husband. We were married the following year and blessed with two more beautiful daughters in 2008 and 2010. God truly does restore the years the locusts have eaten (Joel 2:25).
“My Mike” and I have been through a great deal together, and God has used our rough edges for uncomfortable refinement. After the initial honeymoon phase ended, the mid years of our marriage were marred by baggage and pain from the past, but God faithfully showed us now to unpack it. Mike Huray is one of the few on earth who truly sees the real me – the me who is not fit for TV, who is selfish, has an attitude, and is weak and faithless sometimes. I’ve seen him at his worst too – and have come to a place of deep knowing that God will transcend any challenge that strikes us. The very simple key is making Him the cornerstone of our marriage. Today, we are multipliers for the Kingdom – a powerful unified force, stronger and more effective together than we could ever be alone.
My other Mike is none other than Mike Lindell, the famous inventor of the MyPillow, entrepreneur, and visionary. God opened every door leading to him, too – beginning with a succession of synchronous events. Back in 2017 I’d zeroed in on his cardboard likeness, stationed outside a retail store in Burnsville, MN. This led to a deep dive through the internet and discovery of Mike’s story of redemption and an obsessive drive to work for him. Though I needed a management type position, openings were scarce – prompting me to interview for a part-time retail gig just to get my foot in the door. But as the scheduled day drew near, I looked at the facts of my life and decided I’d made a mistake.
I must’ve picked up my phone a hundred times to cancel in the week leading up to the appointment. My integrity wouldn’t let me. I felt the Holy Spirit pointing me to the MyPillow store.
Once seated for the interview, I told the woman in charge that I’d changed my mind. As I gushed apologetically, she looked over my resume and noticed my background as an addiction counselor.
“Mike has something in the works to help addicts I’ve heard. I’m not sure what it’s all about, but I can pass your resume along.”
A few weeks later, I scanned through my emails and found a new message from the MyPillow corporate office requesting an interview. After clearing the first hurdle, I was told our next step would be a meeting with Mike Lindell.
He was still the “MyPillow Guy” in my eyes, very much a celebrity – and though I tried not be starstruck – I must’ve been bordering on fawning admiration.
Two weeks later, I returned to the corporate office for the much anticipated meeting. That day I’d learn just how absolutely impossible the odds of it truly were. Mike shared that he receives hundreds – if not thousands – of emails each week from people who want to work for him. They may have a product idea, claim to be the best customer service rep around, or dream of being his voice or representing him. Each person sold themselves the best they knew how, hoping to earn just five minutes of his time.
I walked in certain I was just a “number” – as the Bob Seger song goes – but God had selected me for something special. There’s plenty to go around in God’s kingdom. We don’t have to scrap and steal and claw our way to the top – not when we’re surrendered to Jesus, anyway. There’s a perfect plan and an ideal spot just for each us – something uniquely crafted to our gifts and talents.
So many times since that first day with Mike Lindell I’ve wondered WHY God picked me. Why, when there was a plethora of others more qualified, experienced, or organized? Well, he just did. He shows grace and mercy to whomever He chooses. Mike walked in and commenced a lengthy discussion about his platform for addiction recovery, the Lindell Recovery Network. When he concluded, I expected interview questions. Mike took a deep breath, tossed back the dregs from his coffee cup, and announced, “Well, I wanna hire ya.”
I sat in disbelief and finally stammered, “You do? Don’t you want to do an interview? Ask me anything?” Mike chuckled and shook his head. “Nah. I knew I wanted to hire ya. Your name has come up three times in the past week, and I just knew I had to get you in here. Do you know how many people apply and send in resumes? I can’t possibly meet them all – or even a fraction of them. This is a divine appointment!”
Since then, I’ve come to see the real depth of the MyPillow Guy, a rare example of someone steadfastly unswayed by doubters and dissenters. As a student of human behavior, I’ve watched him work a room. People are captivated by his very presence, and now I understand why. Mike Lindell represents something that is quickly evaporating from society – a person who has not altered himself to conform. I admire his rough and unpolished edges – he wouldn’t be the same if he was staged, scripted, or sanitized. He is absolutely masterful in a roomful of suits or heavy-hitters – just the bull–in–a–china–shop guy from Minnesota he has always been. And I mean that in the best way possible – Mike doesn’t worry about offending people for the cause of Jesus Christ. He moves by the Spirit. Social norms, pleasantries, and tact better get out of the way when Mike is on a mission!
Mike Lindell speaks a language everyone can understand, and attracts an eclectic crowd, many of whom do not fit in with the “elite.” I wish to underscore again, he truly is a champion for the underdog. I’ve been present when everyday factory workers summoned him on his cell phone to discuss a shipping problem, and I’ve seen him reach out to employees fresh out of treatment because he was eager to know how they’d fared. He happily poses for hundreds of selfies with people of all ages, races, and walks of life – his smile never fading and never fake. His simple but enduring theme is “I love helping people.”
Mike Lindell has taught me to be more bold, to accept constructive criticism while not taking it personally, and to not be intimidated by a roomful of people with money or expensive suits. I was once completely mortified by having to interrupt him in the middle of a meeting with some influential people. He did not disparage me for doing so. His famous line is: “Call me anytime! I don’t care if I’m at the White House!”
In spite of his constant brushes with fame, it hasn’t changed him – in his eyes, we are all equal at the foot of the cross.
Mike also has an amazing way of modeling that things can feel wrong and look bleak, but that doesn’t mean they really are – he simply calls this “being in the bad part of the movie.” It’s temporary. There’s something very captivating about the sincere excitement he shows in knowing God is working in all things to bring good. It’s contagious. When I’m feeling discouraged by the state of the world, Mike brings hope through his childlike faith and rock-solid assurance that God will ultimately come through.
Mike also walks out my favorite Bible verse – Romans 8:28. “For we know that all things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purposes.”
Mike truly lives these words – grinning like a kid on Christmas morning even in the midst of severe oppression. He has the joy of Jesus in his heart – coupled with an unrelenting faith that “God’s got this!” It’s inspiring, challenging, and deeply rewarding being an important part of Mike Lindell’s team.
I’ve learned other precious gifts from my husband Mike – to think before I speak, to be less reactive, to lighten up, to enjoy the moment. Through his prodding I’ve found joy in getting grubby, jumping in leaf piles, shooting guns and climbing trees. I admire his wit and his mechanical mind; how he views everything in the world with wondering eyes about how it all works. His heart is limitless – he has shown me the importance of making time to visit an aging relative. His love for family is selfless and sacrificial – not based on performance or return on investment. He often tells me: “I wish I had your faith,” when the truth is, he has shown me much more than he knows about the person I wish to become.
I have grown more in the past three years than I have in my entire career. God has placed me on unique journeys with my two Mikes – a quest of learning and growth – a process that’s slowly transforming me into someone more trusting, surrendered, and Christlike.