The soldiers led Jesus away, and as they were going, they met a man from Cyrene named Simon who was coming into the city from the country. They seized him, put the cross on him, and made him carry it behind Jesus.  [LUKE 23 : 26]

Simon of Cyrene walked past the spectacle and witnessed a journey to death. For him it started as a day of small things, coming up to Jerusalem from Libya, things to do and places to see. certainly, going along and minding his own business, perhaps thinking about his boys Alexander and Rufus wishing that they could also be there. Suddenly he was forced to enter the drama.

What good could he possibly do as he carried the cross for Jesus? Could he make the ultimate difference? Could he stop the crucifixion? From distant spectator to reluctant participant carrying a cross – what good was there in this?

The Good is God saying – “Thank you Simon for being there when you were needed, and others had turned away.

When you find that the ultimate is beyond you, but you still step over the threshold into the distress and pain – you are the Simon for Christ, and God says, “Thank you” for your healing presence

When you stop walking by with the old excuses of – better things to do, but are forced into the drama of life., you are Simon on the road to Golgotha, and God says “Thank you for being involved”.

When you cease being a spectator but become a participant, bearing that painful burden for a few stumbling steps. You are Simon carrying the cross and God says, “Thank you” for your willing shoulder.

When you withdraw, consumed by your inadequacy, you are Simon being Simon, until there is another drama to enter, another threshold to cross, and another cross to carry, with God saying, “Thank you for learning that your love in action makes a difference”.


GOD who knows our frailties, forgive our self-doubt and uncertainty when we are content from a distance to watch others pain.

God who calls our name, even when we are reluctant, forgive our resistance and our fear of being overwhelmed by the task you compel us to take on.

God who offers us the cross, a burden too great for us to carry, help us to be a willing participant on a journey we can neither understand or explain.

God who believes in each one of us, help us to go on believing that You take the little we have to offer and use it to make the difference.

God who knows us and calls us, who burdens us and believes in us, help us to hear Your voice of Thanks, and be ready to serve once more.

We pray in the name of Jesus our Saviour and Lord.


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