“Staying On The Old T and O”

January 14, 2015

Train coming at sunrise (Photo by John Heisey)Train approaching at Sunrise
This is the Amtrak line near Mount Joy
(Photo by John Heisey)
“Staying On The Old T&O”
ListenListen to this message on your audio player.“You did not trust Him or obey Him” (Deuteronomy 9:23). “Obey me, and I will be your God and you will be My people. Walk in all the ways I command you, that it may go well with you” (Jeremiah 7:23). “Teach me to do Thy will; for Thou art my God: Thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness” (Psalm 143:10). “Find out what pleases the Lord” (Ephesians 5:10).

I was recently visiting with Richard, a friend who works at White Oak Display, one of the companies we serve as chaplains. He had a neat photo of a train on his computer which prompted a discussion where I learned that he is a train buff just like me. Since he is from Maryland we talked about the B&O Railroad (Baltimore and Ohio).

When I finished our conversation I urged Richard, a fellow believer in Christ, to stay on the old T&O. He looked at me with a quizzical look. I then elaborated, “Stay on the old Trust and Obey line!”

Norfolk and Southern train 9/29/15 I’ve liked trains since I was a small child and my family stayed at my grandparents in Harwood, Missouri. They lived near a rail line and upon hearing the train whistle I’d run out as quickly as my little legs would take me so I could count the engines and railroad cars. Some of them had over 100 cars. This fun exercise was a pleasant object lesson that surely helped me in learning to count up to 100. Not sure how I handled numbers bigger than 100 in my real early years.  (I took the train photo on the left in September last year near Marietta, PA on the Norfolk and Southern line which runs along the Susquehanna River.)

Adrian Rogers, a minister now with the Lord, had a witty way of sharing. He was known to say, “The way to Heaven is not the ladder of logic or the rocket of reason, but the railroad of redemption, the old T&O.”  T&O is likely a takeoff of the B&O (Baltimore & Ohio) railroad.

Trust and Obey So what is “The old T&O”?  The T&O stands for “Trust and Obey”, the title of a beloved hymn that has a current and much needed message. The title for this hymn remains a simple formula in how to successfully live for Christ.

The hymn originated from a testimony meeting, following an evangelistic crusade held in Brockton, Massachusetts, by Dwight L. Moody. We only lived about 15 miles from Brockton when we served a church in Taunton, Massachusetts and traveled to Brockton often.

At the meeting a young man stood to speak, and it soon became clear he knew little Christian doctrine. But he finished by saying, “I’m not quite sure—but I’m going to trust, and I’m going to obey.”

Daniel Towner Daniel Towner, who was in the meeting, jotted down the words, and gave them to John Sammis, who developed the lyrics from them.* I hope many of our readers still sing this beloved timeless hymn as we did in our congregation a few Sundays ago.

Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
To be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

Today’s first text is a rebuke from the Lord to the children of Israel. I purposefully only chose a part of the verse; a stunning, simple indictment of the people from their leader, Moses. “You did not trust Him or obey Him.” The failure to trust and obey is the root of sinful behavior. The practice of trusting and obeying is at the heart of godly living.

Our heavenly Father calls out to us in the second daily text: “Obey me, and I will be your God and you will be My people. Walk in all the ways I command you, that it may go well with you.” In the third text the Psalmist calls out to God, “Teach me to do Thy will; for Thou art my God: Thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness.”  And finally the Apostle Paul writes of the ongoing need for children of God to “Find out what pleases the Lord.”

Let’s all step on board the old T&O, as we trust and obey Jesus and His Holy Word!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father, though I am sometimes perplexed by that which I don’t understand I have an unshakable confidence in You. Your Word is truth and Your promises never fail. There are many things of which I am uncertain, but I have absolute certainty that I can trust You for everything that concerns me. May obedience be an expression of my unwavering trust and devoted love toward You, my Lord and my God.  Amen.

Brooksyne’s further challenge: I challenge our readers to choose the S&N* which makes it possible for you to board the T&O.


2015 Pennsylvania Farm ShowYesterday afternoon Ester and I (Stephen) went to the Pennsylvania Farm Show held each January in Harrisburg.

PA farm show 1/13/15
The large Turkey Hill Cow in front of the complex.

PA farm show 1/13/15
The butter sculpture is always a highlight of the Farmshow. The life-size sculpture, consisting of 1,100 pounds of butter, depicts a food bank worker pouring milk into a boy’s cup while his mother looks on holding a bag of groceries. They stand in front of a cooler filled with gallons of milk bearing the message, “Fill a Glass with Hope.” A farmer and his cow stand nearby.

PA farm show 1/13/15
This colorful rooster was decorating the produce area.

PA farm show 1/13/15
Sorry but this huge New Holland sprayer is sold. Curt, the salesman who is also a friend informed me that he could order another for anyone who might be interested!


Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“Trust And Obey”   Video   Don Moen

“Life Is Like A Mountain Railroad”  Video  Steven Curtis Chapman

“Life Is Like A Mountain Railroad”  Video  Instrumental picking by John Fahey

“This Train Is Bound for Glory”  Video  Homecoming with some amazing harmonica

“Ride That Glory Train” Video  The Crimson River Quartet

*S&N – The straight and narrow

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