the weblog of Alan Knox

Helping a brother or sister who is struggling

Posted by on May 22, 2012 in discipleship | 13 comments

Helping a brother or sister who is struggling

In yesterday’s post, “Where there is much activity, but very little progress,” I asked a few questions about being busy with different things but not maturing in Christ. The problem, of course, is that we often think we are busy with the things of God – we think that we are following Jesus Christ. So, it can be difficult to recognize that we are not.

When I saw the video below, it reminded me of this scenario. Now, when you watch the video, it’s easy to point a finger at the cleaning lady and talk about how stupid she seems to be for not recognizing the problem. But, while you watch it, think about the people around her and how they respond (or do not respond) to her.

Of course, in my scenario, the person is not disconnected from Jesus Christ, but the imagery is similar.

In the video, at least two people notice her problem: the man who walks past her twice and the person who is recording the video. But, apparently, neither one of them help her.

Now that you’ve watched the video, consider this question: How should the body of Christ respond to a sister in Christ who finds herself in this situation (spiritually)?


Comments are closed. If you would like to discuss this post, send an email to alan [at] alanknox [dot] net.

  1. 5-22-2012


    For many years I’ve used the illustration of the human body when it is injured by a flesh wound. There is an immediate response by an army of white blood cells as they rush to the site of the wound to protect, and nurture it.

    That’s the way the body of Christ is designed to function, whatever the need.

  2. 5-22-2012

    I’d say if it isn’t affecting the way they are serving the community…. and isn’t public enough to tarnish the reputation of the church….don’t stress about it…. simply ignore it.

    (Jesus cares more about the bigger community & mission than the one)

    Down the road if this minor set back leads to a bigger sin (which it most likely will) – then you always have the freedom to reproach, admonish and even get rid of them for letting it get so bad… since it’s entirely their fault.


  3. 5-23-2012

    I am really surprised that the cleaning lady did not notice herself, especially when she came back to turn the vacuum off.

    Any way, the only help whether Spiritual or not is to show her what is going on, by interrupting her, to show her

  4. 5-24-2012

    Aussie John,

    That’s a great illustration. Thank you! Unfortunately, I’ve seen too many situation where the “white blood cells” of the church sit on the sidelines.


    I think I understand what you’re saying. We certain want to be careful and gentle and patient when helping a brother or sister in Christ. On the other hand, I think even small “transgressions” affect the body of Christ, whether we realize it or not.


    I’m not surprised that the cleaning lady didn’t notice at first.


  5. 5-24-2012

    i truly believe opposite of everything i wrote. i was being extremely sarcastic! i thought you’d pick up on that. lol ur slipping.

  6. 5-24-2012


    Ah. That explains it. I don’t do sarcasm.



  7. 5-24-2012

    sarcasm not in person doesn’t work as well! 🙂

  8. 5-24-2012

    So that goes to prove that as a man thinks so is he Proverbs 23:7
    We all are designed in such a way that whatever our focus (thoughts) are on, our feelings show the production of.
    Try this be angry without angry thoughts. One has to have the thought dominating in order for the feelings to show the thoughts. So as it is with our souls they are a reflection (like a mirror) of whatever we are thinking. This is why we can be all over the place in an instant. For something happens and immediately we are angered from prevailing thoughts that reminded us of what we do not like in our lifes

  9. 5-24-2012

    not sure what you are referring to Howard or if you’re responding to Alan or to me. Have a great day!
    – Randi 🙂

  10. 5-24-2012

    Randi I was referring to Alans comment see below:

    I’m not surprised that the cleaning lady didn’t notice at first.

    via she did not notice for she had some other controlling thought(s) that kept her from noticing the hose not connected to the vacuum
    Thanks howard

  11. 5-26-2012

    It is a sad example of the Church, in many cases.

    How many times do we “walk past” someone in need? How many times do we overlook a brother’s struggle (whether it be emotional, spiritual or what have you)? How often has it been within someone’s means to help another (not just financially, or materially)?

    I’ve done it. I am becoming increasingly aware of it, too. And, if it is withing my reach or means, I ask the Lord to nudge me and make me aware of someone else’s shortcomings, nudging me further to action.

    How will we be an intact Body if we cannot love one another? How can we dare to call ourselves representatives of Jesus Christ if we cannot love our neighbor?

    Lord! Make me an instrument of Your mercy!

  12. 5-26-2012

    John AMEN

  13. 5-27-2012


    Yes, exactly! That’s what I got out of this video also.



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