Find God in Mayberry, the fictional town in the Andy Griffith Show
On July 3, Americans were saddened by the loss of one of our most beloved and iconic entertainment figures. Andy Griffith enjoyed a career that spanned decades, earning awards as a recording artist, storyteller, and television and movie actor.
However, most people identify him with his role as Sheriff Andy Taylor on The Andy Griffith Show, a TV series that ran from 1960 to 1968. The popular show about a fictional town in North Carolina was a wholesome, family-friendly comedy. What’s more, regular viewers of the original show or reruns surely noticed how easy it was to find God in Mayberry.
Attending Sunday church services was clearly a part of life in Mayberry; some episodes had Sheriff Andy and Deputy Barney Fife humming or singing old gospel hymns as they relaxed on the front porch or did paperwork in their office. The weekly themes and the folksy wisdom that Andy regularly dispensed on the show were drawn from biblical principles. Storylines during the eight seasons focused on the importance of love, family, commitment, and forgiveness; the dangers of gossip, jealousy, lying, and arrogance; the necessity of disciplining children; and the need to put others’ best interests ahead of our own.
Many of the especially touching scenes developed as Andy lovingly trained his son Opie to be a man of integrity and strong character. The one instance that sticks in my mind most clearly involved Andy giving Opie a piece of advice that consisted of four words. Although I don’t remember the prior conversation that had taken place, I can still hear Andy’s parting words as his son walked out the door: “Act like you’re somebody!”
What wonderful words to pass on to your child! Even more wonderful is the fact that we hear those words from our heavenly Father when we read His Word. The Bible is the story of how God loves us so much that He took on human form and died to pay the penalty for our sin. That’s how much He values us; He took our shame and suffering upon Himself so that He could offer us the chance to become His dearly loved, adopted child. If we accept His gift of forgiveness and salvation, we will enjoy eternity with Him after our earthly life ends. Just think, the Creator of our world and all the universes in space thought we were worth dying for. If that doesn’t make us want to “act like somebody”, then whatever will?
This brief video gives a quick overview of Andy Griffith’s career:
For a more in-depth look at Andy’s life, you can read this article: Andy Griffith at Biography.com