When Things Don't Go as You've Planned

Bruce Hoffman

READ : Mark 15:16-24

As Jesus was on the way to the cross, Simon of Cyrene (a place in North Africa) suddenly felt the point of a Roman soldier’s spear, ordering him to carry Jesus’ cross as He was about to collapse from exhaustion. I sympathize with Simon . . . innocently walking with hundreds of others to the place of crucifixion, when suddenly his freedom is taken from him. Whatever Simon’s plans were that day, they were changed!

Sometimes our lives encounter sudden interruptions also, brought on not by a stern Roman soldier, but by a loving God. We are breezing along through life when suddenly some unpleasantry or pain causes a change in our plans. How do you react to those situations which often are accompanied by misery? You can cry out in disgust to God or you can accept the undesirable circumstances with the “eye of faith.”

How did Simon respond to this unpleasant mandate? I’m sure that at first he was disgruntled! However, I believe that he gradually accepted the interruption as this incident may well have been the event which led Simon to place faith in Christ. Simon had two sons, Alexander and Rufus, who were leaders in the early church, all because of a change in plans. God knows what He’s doing!


Lord, grant a fuller measure of freedom to the people of all nations. In Jesus’ name. Amen.