Friends come and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family.
— Proverbs 18:24 The Message
But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
— Proverbs 18:24 New King James Version
In When Rain Falls, Candace lost two best friends. Two years ago it was her husband and now she has lost a friend she has known since junior high school. Both of these people died tragically. Could you blame her for asking the question. “Why does God keep taking away the people I love?” Have you ever asked a similar question to what Candace has asked? The scene below is an excerpt from what I call the “funeral” chapter.
“Like books suddenly without bookends, Candace felt as though she would topple over at any moment. The questions were killing her. Was there something she could have done? Should she have been more vigilant and nosed her way into Pamela’s business? Now she would never know.”
— Excerpt from When Rain Falls
While Candace was struggling with bitterness and trying to cling to her faith, she wasn’t alone. First and foremost, God was right there with her. When Candace was really low, I felt compelled to write God’s word into the scene. His still quiet small voice penetrated her grief and lifted her spirits.
Secondly, God provided Candace with two mother figures. Interestingly enough, not until many edits later, did I realize how much these two women mirrored the older women who were mentors in my life. Beulah Samuels was a high-energetic character who played mother, matchmaker, prayer partner and comic relief. When a scene became really emotional, Beulah’s warmth made me, the writer, smile.
Seventy-six year old Fredricka Roberts brought a bit of humor herself. What she really brought to the story was her wisdom and a faith that had seen it all. Two of the most powerful scenes in When Rain Falls occur in Candace’s salon with Ms. Fredricka in her the salon chair. As a child growing up, I witnessed the extraordinary bond between a cosmetologist and her customer when I hung out in my mother’s beauty salon. It felt so appropriate to bring that bond to the pages of this novel.
When you are feeling down and experience adversity, I hope you turn first and foremost to God. He is the only one that can provide that sweet “peace that surpasses all understanding.” I also hope you have mentors or sistergirlfriends (brothers) that can lend a listening ear. Not so much offering you puffed-up empty advice, but a shoulder to lean on “when rain falls “in your life.