As he travelled towards his crucifixion, Jesus was surrounded by a hostile, angry, jeering crowd. Seeing that he was stumbling, the soldiers pulled an innocent from bystander the crowd and forced him to carry Jesus’ cross.  All we know about him is that his name was Simon, and that he was an immigrant. Had one of the soldiers taken pity on Jesus, or had Simon stepped forward in an act of mercy towards a stranger?

Either way, Simon took the burden of the heavy cross and his kindness enabled Jesus to continue his lonely journey. Kindness, particularly from strangers, is unexpected and can make a huge impact on our lives.

Mark 15: 21

They pressed into service a passer-by, Simon, a Cyrenian, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross.


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