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Finding Grace in Bedrock

If you qualify as a baby-boomer, I have a quiz for you. If you’re younger than that, don’t go away; it’s a TV test and your parents probably made you watch these shows in reruns. Answer these:

1. Who was the most beloved police officer on TV in the ‘60’s?

2. What misplaced mountain man was most admired?

3. Who was the most likeable prehistoric man in the animated world?

Here are the correct answers (in my opinion):

  1. Sheriff Andy Taylor;

  2. Jed Clampett;

  3. Fred Flinstone.

Now, for the important question: What was it that you liked about these characters? Sheriff Taylor was hardly as exciting as James Bond. He was an unarmed officer driving a ho-hum car along the uneventful streets of Mayberry.

Yet, I liked Andy better. He was just an ordinary guy, but he still managed to always find a way to keep Aunt Bea and Barney (and even Otis) happy. And he still had time to take Opie fishing every week!

What about Jed? A hillbilly who mistook the pool table for a fancy eatin’ table, he was unsophisticated, but wise nonetheless. With homespun, blue-denim wisdom and good humor, he continued to be a gentle and kind man in spite of mountains of money.

Fred Flintstone, never suave and debonair, was always one step from the unemployment line and one word from the doghouse. But the quarry always took him back, and Wilma always let him back in the house when the cat locked him out.

Could it be that we liked these imperfect heroes so much because these were just that – imperfect? Could it be that we enjoyed those shows so much because, in spite of the glitzy glare of Hollywood, they gave us a glimpse of God – of his grace?

One of the great cosmic ironies is that “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things . . . (1 Corinthians 1:27-28).

In others words, God has always done his best work in stumblers and bumblers like Andy, Jed, and Fred – real men like Moses, David, and Peter, even 21st century bumblers like you and me.

Makes you want to stay tuned to see what the next episode of life may bring, doesn’t it?


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