“As they led him away, they seized a man, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming from the country, and they laid the cross on him, and made him carry it behind Jesus” (Luke 23:26)
All around me I hear shouting. They have forcibly laid hold of a labourer who was passing by, perhaps by chance. Without much explanation they force him to shoulder my burden. I feel relieved. They tell him to walk behind me. Together we will go to the place of execution.
More than once, when proclaiming God’s kingdom, I had said: “Whoever does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple”. But now this man is carrying my cross. Perhaps he doesn’t even know who I am, yet he is helping me and following me all the same.
Lord Jesus, we often keep the burdens we carry to ourselves, as if we are afraid to impose ourselves on others. Teach us to see the helping hand, to know that we are not alone. We pray for everyone who cares for others in their material and spiritual needs, often to their own expense.