Station 8: Simon Carries the Cross
Luke 23:26: As the soldiers led him away, they seized Simon from Cyrene, who was on his way in from the country, and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus.
A person from the crowd is ordered by the guards to take the cross of Jesus and carry it. This is not the guards trying to be kind to Jesus, they must keep things moving along. Jesus is becoming weaker and slowing down as He shuffles along. The pace must pick up and they want Jesus to make it to the crucifixion alive. So they order Simon of Cyrene into cross-carrying duty. He is forced into being an accomplice in the crucifixion of Jesus. The cross is removed from Jesus’s shoulders and placed upon those of Simon. The death march continues and the two plod onward. Consider how the Roman soldiers, after seeing Jesus weaken with each step and fearing that he would die before he was crucified, recruited Simon of Cyrene to help carry the cross behind our Lord. Imagine yourself as Simon, what would you say to Jesus?
Lord Jesus, I accept the cross I have to bear. You died out of love for me. Grant me strength to live for You; and if I die, let me die for love of You. Help me with Your grace, that I may be aware of Your will for me always.