Waiting for the Train

The frequency of trains coming through my town has recently increased. Someone tried to explain it to me, and I still don’t understand and actually, don’t object. I rather like the sound of the train whistle.

This morning I found myself in a line of vehicles at the railroad tracks. Parents of years gone by occupied their young passengers by counting the cars as they rolled by. While I waited, I shifted the car into neutral and counted cars. Since there were 97 cars, several thoughts also scurried through my brain.

Movies seem to like to feature fist fights atop box cars and it is spellbinding to see those cowboys and outlaws jumping from car to car and wrestling fearlessly.

Trains full of boxcars carried Jews to prisons during the Nazi days. Horrible stories are told of the conditions in which those passengers traveled. I thought of the torment and stench they suffered at the hands of Hitler and his followers.

Trains carried orphan children from the Eastern coast into the Midwest and beyond during the last half of the nineteenth century and early twentieth century. How frightening for those children. How comforting when they found loving foundations on which they could build the rest of their lives. At least some of them found a better life.

My grandparents on my mother’s side lived across from a train depot when I was a child. Hardly an evening passed that Grandma didn’t prepare a plate of food for a hobo who sat on the front step and ate. Grandma was generous enough to give them dessert too.

All those thoughts crossed my mind as I also aimlessly counted the cars passing in front of me. Our minds are seldom idle. All of the thoughts that passed by me were the product of my eyes. What I observed, saw in a movie, or read in a book. Would it be true that is the reason that the Spirit-inspired book, the Holy Bible says: “I will set no wicked thing before my eyes . . .: Psalm 101:3



  1. Glenda

    My grandfather worked for the railroad just east of Knoxville, TN, for many years. Then, several decades later, my dad worked at a railroad crossing, watching to warn school bus drivers if there was a train coming on the complex network of crossings in Powell, TN. Of course, our grandsons have all loved Thomas the tank engine and all his friends, and at one time, we lived right next to a track in Chattanooga, TN, and could almost set our clocks by the train that came through each afternoon shortly after lunch. Trains have always been a source of stability and comfort to me, too, at other times in my life. All that aside, we DO have to be very careful what we allow our eyes to behold, as there is much to pull us away from the goal of Godly living. You have probably heard Pastor Koster preach on the lust of the eyes, and how that leads to the lust of the flesh, which will lead to sin if we allow it to take hold. “Oh, be careful, little eyes, what you see… ” Thank you for another timely reminder!

  2. I think you hit the nail right on top of the head, Karyl 🙂

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