July 31, 2018
From trying to whistle and snap my fingers to the theme song tune to watching my elderly mother-in-law chuckle at Deputy Barney’s antics, the Andy Griffith Show has brought entertainment to our household. Andy Griffith modeled the show’s town, Mayberry, after his own hometown of Mount Airy, North Carolina. Here, the fictitious town meets reality.
Walking down the main street, we saw the real Floyd’s Barbershop, Snappy Lunch, Barney’s Diner and more. But like all touristy towns, it has morphed into another typical one. The streets had their fill of trinkets, souvenirs, and candy shops. A small hint of distinction came from old styled squad car tours and the local museum. But for us, only a couple hours walking downtown was okay as we came to the area because of other nearby attractions anyway. In fact, I am still thinking about something from the Mayberry Campground, where we stayed.
Eng and Chang Bunker were conjoined twins that decided to call Mount Airy home. Each one had their own wife. They used to all live together until tensions increased too much and the sisters each got their own home. (One of the homes is located at the Mayberry Campground). Between the two brothers, they had 21 children and now have over 1500 descendants in the area.
After getting over the awkwardness of imagining what married life must have been like, I started thinking about how they had to deal with conflict resolution. Each of them were first hand witnesses to each other’s life. They had to agree or submit to the other on what to do in life, where to live, and who to be around. They were by each other’s side even if the other disagreed about the decision the opposite one made. Nothing one of them did could easily be kept a secret from the other. Though they were two people, they had to act in unity throughout their lives.
At first I thought, “I could never live like that!” But then it dawned on me that is like how a successful marriage has to be. Reread the last paragraph again thinking about the words from a marriage perspective. The man and woman are joined together until “death do us part”. They must have a mindset to be in it for the long run. Marriages fail because people don’t want to put their self-centered desires aside for the sake of the other person he or she is joined to.
After 20 years of marriage, I guarantee you life with the other person does not consist of only 100% agreement. Compromises, and even conceding to “go along for the ride” has to happen. But in the end, I have to die to myself and trust God that everything will work out. Fortunately, I have a man who understands he will have to answer to God for the decisions his leadership brings. He also knows he is to love me like how Jesus loved the church; Jesus laid down His life to save his bride, the church (believers).
As novel as it was to see the Andy Griffith Show come to life, I left Mayberry with a wonderful reminder of what being joined together in marriage is like. Eng and Chang could not give up and go separate ways. They had to work through issues. Though married people do not see the joining physically, be aware they are like conjoined twins spiritually, emotionally, economically, etc. How do you act in your marriage?
Until we meet again,