Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Honors for Simon of Cyrene

On the Saturday before Easter, Brenda and I cut through the woods behind our house to reach a wooded trail behind Neil Leitch's house.  Neil maintains a fairly long trail and at Easter he sets up 14 stations to take the walkers through major events of the crucifixion.  It was a beautiful day and a holy experience.

One station particularly struck me, the one about Simon of Cyrene.  There were readings for each of the stations and this one was the shortest. Simon is now famous as the one who carried Jesus' cross as he struggled towards Golgotha.

I have never given much thought to Simon, though my first sermon about 25 years ago was relevant. Part of the text was from Matt 11: "28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Do you think that cross was light for Simon?

How about this more familiar Scripture from Matt 16, "24 Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it."

Well, Simon was honored by G^d for whatever reason.  Simon had the opportunity to CONTRIBUTE to the SALVATION of the whole world through simply carrying the cross that was presented.  Can we do the same?


G^d calls us to serve.  G^d gives us opportunities to serve, maybe not in the same manner as Simon the Hero, but opportunities that we can take up our cross, and that yoke is easy and that burden is light.

So, what are we waiting on?

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