It is often frustrating to start programing in OpenGL. I came across this OpenSceneGraph which is a middle ware between the 3d application and OpenGL. It is a C++ based toolkit.
This toolkit is categorized as a render engine. Render engines are common tools in game development. There is a wiki article which list a lot of game engines. Game engines typically will have a rendering engine (basically an abstraction over OpenGL), Physics engine, sound engine, collision detection.
Other than OpenSceneGraph, I have been using pand3d. It is a Python based library for graphics rendering. Extremely convenient to use. Has good support for loading 3d models from files
Resources for OpenSceneGraph
Although documentation is a nightmare. Check the Quick start guide. May like to start with chapter 3 of this.
Yet another good tutorial :
3D Models Resources