Christ’s call to follow him implies walking behind him and tracing his footsteps—as it were. However, while this is surely true in the early stages of discipleship, a verse from our first reading suggests that this initial following becomes a “walking with” Jesus, rather than following on behind him. For in assuring us that our Teacher will no longer hide himself, the Prophet goes on to say: from behind a voice shall sound in your ears: This is the way; walk in it. This voice sounding from behind suggests progress in discipleship allowing Christ to change position and no longer walk before us but with us—and indeed within us. For, as we grow more sensitive to Christ’s voice sounding in the depths of our heart, our minds gradually assume the mind of Christ and take on his divine perspective. This sensitivity to Christ’s inner guidance is progressive and thus, when necessary, Christ must actually correct our direction and point the way forward, when we would mistakenly turn to the right or left. Saint Francis Xavier became the great missionary he was precisely because he, like Paul, had (through sustained effort) acquired the mind of Christ, and ever alert to his voice sounding in the depths of his heart, walked in the way of the Lord—veering neither to the right nor to the left. May his intercession obtain for us this grace also so that we too may tread that narrow but sure path to the heavenly kingdom.