As a little child, my friends and I used to play a very popular game called ‘Simon Says’. And just in case you also played this game, but have forgotten just how it went, please allow me to refresh your memory by inserting this 2:13 minute Youtube video below:
I owe you an explanation here…
A little background on Simon’s family…
According to scripture, Simon was married to a devout godly woman, who had been, at some time in her life, a surrogate mother to the Apostle Paul. For in Paul’s epistle to the Romans after he lays the foundations for the establishment of the church and the grounds for justification by faith, among others, he admonishes the letter recipients to salute Simon’s son Rufus, who is a man chosen in the Lord, and to also salute his mother and mine. This is a personal reference to that born-again Jewish family which indicates that Paul was extremely close to the son Rufus and his mother (no doubt claiming her as his own). Romans 16:13
Simon had another son named Alexander, who is not included in Paul’s invitation to the people of Rome to pay homage to Simon’s wife and son Rufus. Never the less, what is ironic is the fact that there are four other Alexanders mention in New Testament scriptures, all of whom opposed teachings on Jesus Christ, and were especially hostel to Paul. And by the way, the definition of the Greek name Alexandros is ‘a defender of men’…not a defender of God.
So I had a little conversation with God…
I paused while composing this blog just long enough to stealthily (tongue in cheek) invite God to take a little walk with me like he did with Enoch, and exclaim to me why some biblical names remain throughout eternity and other names die out. In other words, why did he send out a divine call for a man named Simon. Hardly anyone names their child after those who contended with God; for example, Lucifer or Jezebel or Satan or Devil or Judas. Yet Thomas, Saul and Delilah are still very popular names of persons who doubted the divinity of the Godhead.
The Holy Spirit nudged me and informed me that I was not ready to embark upon such a topical journey that I was suggesting, but He would share the divine relationship God wanted to have with this particular man named Simon from Cyrene.
First of all, Simon already had so many traits resembling God himself. Simon was a loving father who had a child that was obedient and who had a serving heart for the church. Like Jesus, Simon presented the Good News and traveled to a distant synagogue in Jerusalem and may have been one of the “men of Cyrene” who preached the word to the Greeks (Acts 11:20). Simon was most like Jesus when Jesus became tired, weary and burdened down and Simon was obedient to the divine order of God (at the behest of an authoritative soldier) and carried the cross for our Lord up a hill called Calvary.
Therefore, let our prayer be…
Dear Heavenly Father, whose most dear and beloved Son, as He walked the way of The Cross, did accept the services of Simon of Cyrene to carry his physical burden for Him: please God, grant us each the grace gladly to bear one another’s burdens, for the love of Him who said, “As you did it to the least of these my brethren, you did it to me,” your Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for evermore. Amen
So in closing, yes, I truly do have penetrating conversations with God, but sometimes, when I pose a query that is too lofty for me or that is not in his will, I, too, must become like his Son and say…’not my will but thine be done’.
Scripture Lesson: The Lord’s Prayer. Our Father, which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, As it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, As we forgive them that trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, The power, and the glory, For ever and ever. Amen. Matthew 6:9-13
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