Longing for Mayberry

I was thinking about “The Andy Griffith Show” while images of disaster flashed across the TV screen on Seeptember 11. “Ah, those were happier times,” I thought longingly. Then I recalled… “The Andy Griffith Show” was aired during the Cuban Missile Crisis, the death of John F. Kennedy, of Martin Luther King, of Bobby Kennedy. America’s teenagers were succumbing to the new drug culture.. The Cold War was on. The world was in chaos.

But somehow Andy Griffith and the crew of writers who wrote the 1/2 hour comedy skits for “The Andy Griffith Show” found a way to make us laugh at ourselves while simultaneously instilling pride in our country. They made us see the absurd in personal foibles while helping us find the best in everyone. They poked fun at some of the pretensions of small-town life while exemplifying the best qualities found not only in small towns and but in any close-knit community in America. They took our minds off of the cares and worries of the bigger world while teaching us the invaluable lessons of life found in the microcosm of Mayberry.

Let us not forget the lessons of Mayberry as we look once again at a world in chaos. Love your friends and family. Help your neighbor. Forgive a flaw. Pull together. Sing a hymn. Look to the God that people turned to for comfort and guidance at All Soul’s Church. Whether it is cutting hair, cooking meals, doing your chores, or wearing a uniform and a badge, do the job God has given you to do to the best of your ability and never forget who you are, where you come from and Whom you serve.

Mayberry and “The Andy Griffith Show” did not reflect America in the 60’s; it represented the best of what America can be, exemplified by a hand-full of people with flaws — people like you and me. We can’t go back to Mayberry, but we can bring a little of Mayberry to the world around us by applying something as simple as the Golden Rule: “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” It’s what Andy and Aunt Bee would have done.
(From our archives 9/13/2001)
Related Stories and Links:
Andy Griffith Tells His Story
The Way Back to Mayberry
Christian Activities Mayberry Forum

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