There was once a time when the Walls of Jericho surrounded Tamika Hall's heart to ensure another man would never crush it again.
Divorced and a single mom, the headstrong Hall was better off without a man in her life, or so she thought.
Having been remarried for nearly seven happy years, Hall wants to show hurt women and good men they can find love again in her new gospel dramedy, "How To Love A Saved Man," which debuts at Jesus Love Temple on Saturday.
"How To Love A Saved Man" follows three couples of friends in relationships and the issues each couple is struggling with. For instance, Mike (Terrelle Hall) is a God-fearing husband who spends much of his time in church. Ironically, this frustrates his God-fearing wife, Sony (Tamika Hall), who's upset Mike doesn't spend more time with her outside of church, although she was constantly on her knees praying for him to give his heart to God.
Then there's Quentin (Teran Goldsborough) and Charlene (Ty Bolden). Quentin is a sweet stockbroker who was just laid off. Thankfully, his good friend Mike is letting him crash at his place until he can get back on his feet. Meanwhile, Quentin stumbles across the cute Charlene, a guarded woman who wants nothing to do with him or any man.
The broken-hearted Charlene was just kicked out of her apartment by her ex-boyfriend and isn't about to let another man ruin her life. Homeless, she moves in with her friend Sony and is shocked to discover Quentin is living under the same roof. In time, Charlene realizes Quentin isn't the wolf in sheep's clothing she made him out to be.
The last couple is Sheldon (Juante Wilson) and Robin (Capri Lee). Robin is an author and domineering woman who's the breadwinner in her household. She sees the faithful Sheldon, her publicist, as merely a puppy on her short leash.
While all the characters in the show are flawed, Hall says they're all good people. That includes the bossy Robin, too, because "a lot of the characters in the play are based on me," said Hall, 33, of Maryland, who's married to Terrelle. "The different couples mirror me and [Terrelle]."
After being devastated from her previous marriage nearly a decade ago, Hall found herself walking in the same gloomy shoes as Charlene. And her husband was playing the role of Quentin.
"I didn't trust anybody," she said. "I was like, 'It's me and my daughter against the world." It took months but Terrelle's kindness was able to crumble the tough exterior around Hall's heart.
"Terrelle came into my life when my daughter was 3 years old," she added. "He took her in as his own and taught me what the true meaning of love was."
Page 2 of 2 - In the show, Hall wants to unveil to men why women put up walls and also inform them that
"every mad black woman is not crazy," she explained. "I think women in general love and love very hard. When your heart is shattered by someone else, it's very difficult to trust in somebody."
IF YOU GO
WHAT 'How To Love A Saved Man'
WHEN 6 p.m., Saturday
WHERE Jesus Love Temple, 106 South Walnut St., Milford
COST $15 for adults; $10 for children
INFO Visit howtoloveasavedman.weebly.com