Finding the Way Back to Mayberry

Lesson 25 – A Date for Gomer

Barney has been looking forward to the big Chamber of Commerce dance all year long, but there is a problem. Thelma Lou’s cousin Mary Grace is coming for a visit and Thelma Lou won’t go to the dance unless Barney can help her find a date for Mary Grace. This does not sit well with Barney. You see, Barney is not impressed with the physical appearance of Mary Grace, in fact he calls her a dog. Barney solicits Andy’s help with the matter and they brainstorm to identify a date for Mary Grace. Suddenly, Gomer Pyle walks into the courthouse…

Lesson Points
Emphasis on Appearances (1 Sam. 16:7)

            Hasty judgements

            Missing the real person

Where is your Heart? (Matt. 22:37-40)

            On yourself

            Concerned with others

Assuming the Worst (Eph. 4:22-24)

            Jumping to conclusions

            Loss of faith

What’s really Important (Phil. 2:1-4)

            Unconditional acceptance

            Putting self last

Barney completely disregarded Mary Grace solely because of her appearance. Do we have trouble basing our opinion of others on external factors as well? What are the dangers of having this approach when dealing with others?

Barney and Andy’s motivation for setting up Gomer and Mary Grace was purely selfish – they knew that the only way they could go to the dance was to find a date for Mary Grace. Gomer on the other hand was more concerned that Mary Grace be treated with the respect that she deserved. When dealing with people, which attitude do you display? That of Barney or that of Gomer?

When Gomer abruptly leaves, everyone assumes that he is walking out on Mary Grace. No one bothers to give him the benefit of the doubt. Using this example, how easy is it for us to make quick judgements of the intentions of others?

Gomer’s respect and admiration for Mary Grace is so strong, he goes out of his way to make sure her needs are met. Gomer took the time to see past the physical and to really get to know the person inside. What can we learn from Gomer’s kind heart?

Final Thought
"She’s nice, she’s real nice!" - Gomer