Rome St. John sat down on the bed in the small room he was renting from one of Summeridge's inns. Sighing, he ran a hand through his hair and stared emptily out the window.
Hendrick, God? Do you really want me to go to Hendrick? Or am I just being selfish in wishing that I could travel somewhere with Alina?
The wind was the only thing that answered Rome's question. Outside, the tree branches moved lazily in rhythm to the weather, the perfect picture of tranquility. Rome stood and moved over to the window, where he leaned against the wall and watched the world outside.
"I know You're there, God," Rome whispered. "And I know I oughtn't to expect to hear Your answer...but it would be nice."
Throughout his journeys across the country, Rome had experienced many trials. Although they had at first caused Rome to question his calling, now Rome looked back and saw God's hand through it all. Everyone has their seasons of doubt, but those doubts eventually lead to a faith more beautiful than before, Rome's father had many times said.
"'Here I am, Lord. Send me,'" Rome quoted the words of the prophet Isaiah. "Send me where You want me to go. Though I must confess, traveling somewhere with Alina would be a pleasant surprise."
The wind still whistled through the trees.
Digging through his satchel, Rome searched for his Bible. Finally, he found his most treasured possession and opened it. It didn't take long for him to find his favorite passage. He'd read it so many times that there was a crease in the Bible where Rome had opened to it.
When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.
"Well, God, show me where You want me to go. I'll go and know that You are with me."
The words felt flat on Rome's lips, as though they could not contain the heartfelt faith in Rome's heart. Yes, he had had his share of trials, but he had become a stronger person because of them.
"And God...would You mind blessing Alina? I don't know what's on her mind, Lord, but I think she's having a hard time. Only You know how to save her." Rome leaned more wearily against the wall and closed his eyes. He was so exhausted..."And please, give me strength for the journey...whatever it'll be..."