I fell in love with Nila Black while writing my first novel, Melody’s Song. My heart broke for Nila’s hopelessness caused by years of neglect and her current abusive relationship. So, when that story finished, I knew I had to continue Nila’s.
As you read her story, you may wonder if I drew on experiences from my own life. The answer is yes and no. I thank God that I have never experienced the kind of abuse that Nila endured. I will confess that as a teen I was attacked and molested, and that gave me some reactions to explore. But when my husband and I cared for four siblings who were terribly abused by someone who should have protected them, that changed me. The damage done to these innocent, beautiful children tore away my mask of naiveté. I could not simply wish that children everywhere would be cared for and protected. I, like Will in Nila’s Hope, became desperate to protect, but for the most part, I was powerless.
That’s why Nila’s journey from fear and despair to courage and bright hope resonated within me. I knew that what I could not accomplish in my own strength, God could redeem.
Nila learned that her quest for a trustworthy hope could only be found in her Savior, Jesus Christ. And with the help of her landlords/friends, Pastor Dave and Lydia, Nila dug deep into God’s word and found treasures of promise.
Treasures like, “The Lord delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love” (Psalm 147:11). Nila had never known an unfailing love. In her childhood, everyone she’d loved had abandoned her. It’s not surprising that this verse grabbed her heart.
And when the danger that stalked her pushed her to despair, Psalm 119:49-50 became her buoy of hope. “Remember your word to your servant, for you have given me hope. My comfort in my suffering is this: your promise preserves my life.”
I greatly admire Nila, and while I hope I never have to what she did, her journey encouraged my faith. I pray it does the same for you.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13). Amen.
Once upon a time, there was a shy girl who loved to read. She found friends, adventure, and reasons to trust God in the pages of her favorite books. When she grew up, she carried a dream in her heart that some day she would join those authors long admired in the adventure of writing stories. Today Kathleen Friesen is writing and loving it. Her stories invite readers to risk faith, dare to love, and trust God with the consequences.
After thirty years on the Canadian prairies, Kathleen and her husband Ron now live in the beautiful Okanagan Valley of British Columbia, Canada. They enjoy travelling, long walks in nature, and time spent with family and friends. And wherever they go, Kathleen’s on the prowl for ideas for her next book. Catch us with Kathleen on her website, and on Facebook.
More About Nila’s Hope:
Just when her career as a carpenter and a relationship with handsome co-worker Will Jamison are within reach, Nila Black’s abusive ex-boyfriend is released from prison. He’s out of jail, out for revenge, and making promises she knows he’ll keep. Nila will do whatever it takes to save her friends from the evil that will come their way if she doesn’t put distance between them-even if it means abandoning her new-found faith. It will take a miracle and an angelic messenger to show Nila that God is her greatest protector. He has never left her side, and He wants only the best for her and for the man she loves.