I don’t mean the “abandoning your faith” walking away. If I understand God’s Word and His promises to us, abandoning Him is impossible for us anyway.
I’m talking about the “I can handle this myself, I don’t need God” kind of walking away.
Our Vacation Bible School verse this past summer was Isaiah 30:21,
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.” (NIV)
God showed me a few cool things about that verse as I continued to read it and meditate on it. Ray Stedman’s commentary added some insight that illuminated that verse even more.
Stedman pointed out that whomever the verse is addressing is actually walking away from the speaker,
“your ears will hear a voice behind you“
The other thing I learned was that no matter which direction we take, no matter where we go, we’ll still hear the voice. Even as we’re walking away from God, choosing to walk another way (the path of our own choosing) the voice never fades. We will still hear God’s voice behind us. Even though we choose to walk away (I call it backsliding), God remains close enough to whisper in our ear.
What is He saying? “I’ve chosen a beautiful path for you. I love you and want the best for you. You can never walk away from me far enough that you find yourself out of range of my voice. This path I have chosen for you and I’m pleading with you to walk in it.”
Though He has a right path for us, though His ways are higher than our ways, though He loves us without condition or regret, He still gives His children the will to choose to “walk in it” or walk away from Him.
We may choose to follow the wrong way for years, even decades. But His voice will always be there with His admonition to walk in the path He has chosen for us.
WOW! That’s why I believe we serve an awesome, loving God.