Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it." Isaiah 30:21
I remember the wife of a good pastor friend telling the story of how she came to Christ. She was in high school and was attending a Wednesday night prayer service at her church. In the course of that time, she came under deep conviction as to the state of her soul and her need for Christ. As their time together was ending, the pastor invited any who might care to, to come and pray to receive Him. Fighting the Lord and His call upon her heart, she got up and made for the door. As she was walking out, a sweet elderly lady stopped her, and asked, "Aren't you heading the wrong way honey?" She continued on, but when she got home, the still, small, but oh so powerful voice of the Savior pierced her heart and her resistance. Kneeling beside her bed, she welcomed the Jesus she had been running from, fully into her heart and life. A key part of it all was that she knew He was speaking directly to her through that sweet old saint. She was heading the wrong way. In that moment, Isaiah 30:21 became a reality. The Voice behind her called her to His way. To walk in it.
I remember something of this experience myself, except at the time(s) the outcome was much different for me. My first encounter with His Voice happened in college. I was in the midst of, as I so often was, emotional and spiritual turmoil. Walking one day, mostly in a daze, I passed by the building where the "Jesus Freaks" met. The door was open, and I could see them sitting inside. One of them called to me as I stood there, "Come on in." I heard Christ's voice through his, but after standing there for a few moments, I walked on....continuing in the wrong way. I would continue on that way for another five long years. In that time there would be other instances of His speaking to me through various people and circumstances, but I persisted in my walk in the wrong direction, steadily spiraling downward. Finally, after accepting the invitation of a friend to attend his church, I heard the Truth preached for the first time. What I heard pierced my heart. I knew for sure I really was walking in the wrong direction....and I knew that the road before me was growing ever shorter. His still, small voice whispered to me again, and this time, I listened. I heard His voice behind me, and in the dining room of the home I grew up in, I turned around from my way onto His. By His saving, keeping grace, I have never left it, and He has never left me. And most wonderful of all; His Voice no longer need speak from behind me. He speaks to me, as He did Moses, "Face to face, as a friend."
We so easily go off in the wrong direction. And the thing is, you can have gone to an altar, asked Him into your heart, and yet be making choices, foolishly or willfully that are taking you in the wrong direction. Whether it be from deception, rebellion, ignorance, whatever, His Voice will continually speak to us, "This is (My) Way, turn around (repent) and walk in it." If you're moving in the wrong direction, as was that young girl who would one day be a pastor's wife, as I did through a lifetime of rebellion, His Voice speaks to you. Calls you. You're moving in the wrong direction, and the end will surely be destruction. He calls you from it. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Hear Him. Receive Him. Walk and live in Him. Then He'll no longer be a Voice behind you, but a Friend, and Lord, before You. Leading you day by day in His direction.