Would you rather have the cross laid upon you because it was demanded (Luke 23:26), or would you rather take up the cross and willingly follow Jesus (Luke 9:23)? The question is easy to answer, but the application is more difficult than many might realize.
As a “passer-by” Simon might have been interested in seeing what was going on. It may have been that he was not totally clear as to who was being led out to the hill for execution, but his curiosity moved him to be in position for a Roman soldier (presumably) to compel him to do something he never intended doing. I wonder if Simon’s life was changed from that point forward.
The cross of Jesus is willingly carried by a small percentage of people; rather than wondering who might be the few, be sure to take inventory (2 Corinthians 13:5) regarding yourself as to whether you are one of those few. RT