Matthew 9: 36
At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd.
A healthy sheep will only respond and follow the voice of its shepherd. When a sheep becomes ill it will listen and follow any voice, and become a sheep without its shepherd leaving it troubled and abandoned. Addictive behaviors inevitably lead to illness of the mind shutting out the voice of Jesus the Good Shepherd. The result of our addictive behavior is we are more vulnerable to listening to false prophets. Today’s false prophets of sex outside of marriage, pornography, greed, excessive drinking (there are too many to name here) that promise us happiness and fulfillment will only lead to a life that is unmanageable. The words of John the Baptist can be useful to break off attachment from the voice of the false prophets in our lives when he said “He must increase and I must decrease” and “Behold the Lamb of God”. Restoring manageability to my life requires me to decrease and for Jesus to increase and accept that he is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, and the Good Shepherd who cares for his sheep. It is in this humble acceptance of taking Christ’s lead as my Shepherd that the voices of the false prophets go away allowing for sin to decrease and virtue to increase in my life.