By Steve Higginbotham
My wife and I just returned from a visit to
Mt. Airy, NC, the home of Andy Griffith. Since we’re fans of the
Andy Griffith show, we thought it would be fun to go to Mt. Airy,
Andy’s real-life home town, and the model town for the fictional
town of Mayberry. We went through the Andy Griffith Museum, took a
few pictures, and headed home. Within hours, we learned that Andy
Griffith had passed away.
Since hearing the news of his passing, I listened to an interview he
gave a couple years ago. The interviewer asked him if he could
remember all the episodes of the Andy Griffith Show. Surprisingly to
me, he said, “no.” Oh, he remembered many of them, had some
favorites, but just didn’t remember all of them. I found that
amazing because there are thousands of people across the country who
remember every episode, can tell you what’s going to happen next,
and even quote lines. But Andy, himself, couldn’t.
That caused me to reflect on how our
influence can long outlive our lives. Some of the episodes that Andy
Griffith actually participated in were not remembered by him, but
thousands of people who simply “looked on” remember every detail.
What that tells me is that I had better be cautious about my words,
attitudes, and actions. What I might say or do today, and forget
about tomorrow, may never be forgotten by an “onlooker,” even long
after I am dead and gone.
The passing of Andy Griffith reminded of a
truth spoken by the apostle Paul, “For none of us lives to himself,
and no one dies to himself” (Romans 14:7). Make sure that the
influence you have on others is the kind that you want to outlive
- Steve Higginbotham preaches for the Karns Church of Christ in
Knoxville, TN. He may be contacted through the congregation's
website at http://www.karnschurch.org