It was January 7, 1956 and Emory had just been discharged from the Marines. He chose to ride the train from Camp Pendleton, California, to West Chicago, then take the Norfolk and Western south to Welch, West Virginia. In making the change, he asked the porter to give him directions, and the porter carelessly rattled of f a few numbers. Then he climbed aboard what he thought was the right train, and settled down in his seat for the ride south.

The train was already in motion when the conductor came by to check his ticket. He studied it a moment, and then asked, “Where are you going young man?”

“Welch, West Virginia,” he replied.

“I’m sorry, the conductor explained, “but you should be on the Norfolk and Western.

“I’m on the Norfolk and Western!” he insisted.

“No sir. You are on the New York Central.

Emory thought his heart would stop beating, and he began to shake inside.

The conductor watched as he pulled out his wallet and opened it. Just one five dollar bill was all he had. “What on earth will I do in New York, City? I don’t belong there! I’m just a dumb country boy from West Virginia who needs to get home!”

The kind conductor left for a few minutes, then returned. No doubt he’d been through the same scene many times. He spoke reassuringly. “We have a stop near the Norfolk & Western Terminal on the east side of Chicago. We can put you on a cab just as soon as we make our next stop.”

Dear Readers, Every one of us fit into one of three categories: a careless porter who influences others to go in the wrong direction (Satan), a lost soul who is desperate because of his circumstances, or a kind conductor, who patiently helps the lost soul find the right way home! In which category are you?
Lord, please raise up more kind conductors!!!

Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This the the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left. (Isaiah 30:21) The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise. (Proverbs 11:30)

—Rebecca Somoskey