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WISHES…are a part of everyone’s life no matter the age or where you live. Early on every child learns that it is a custom to make a wish before you blow out your candles. I was always so eager to eat cake and ice cream I cannot recall if I really ever made an honest wish. If I did, I must not have been very good at it because I don’t think any ever came true, none that I can recall anyway.


There are wishing wells, fountains and other venues where you may throw a coin into them and make a wish. Many are set up to attract your coins for use in various charities. Those of you who are old enough or are fans of old movies will remember the 1954 movie and title song – Three Coins in the Fountain.


Even more of you will recall this anonymous rhyme that we used to repeat as children, “Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight, I wish I may, I wish I might, have this wish I wish tonight.” Wishes are usually full of anticipation and hope. Not all are based on anything other than wishful thinking and wishful hoping. But that doesn’t stop a child from wishing!


And for us kids that grew up in the country, there was the ‘pully bone’ in the chicken. Special carving of the white meat created it. After it was eaten, a small wish bone or pully bone was left. Shaped like a V, there was one part that was slightly longer than the other. The person with the bone would put it under the table and another person would take hold of the other part. Each would make a wish. They would then pull the bone apart and whoever ended up with the longer part, their wish would be granted. There were creative ways to cheat, but that’s another story. O, well!

The other day I was dining in one of my favorite Chinese restaurants. As I was leaving I noticed for the first time a display that is featured here in the photo. It was their version of a Buddhist wishing well. Many coins surrounded the vases that evidently represented the six desired wishes, or hoped for results. They were: LONG LIFE, HARMONY, WEALTH, ROMANCE, HEALTH, HAPPINESS. Anybody into these? Just toss a coin, make a wish, and hope for the best!


It made me stop and reflect on the promises in God’s word. His promises are not based on wishful thinking, tossing a coin or pulling on a bone. His are based on truth and are available through grace brought about by the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ.


Long Life “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you” (Ex. 20:12). 

Harmony – “Walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, long-suffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:1b-3).  

Wealth “Riches and honor are with me (wisdom), enduring riches and righteousness. My fruit is better than gold, yes, than fine gold, and my revenue than choice silver. I traverse the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of justice, that I may cause those who love me to inherit wealth, that I may fill their treasuries” (Prov. 8:18-22).


Romance“I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys. Like a lily among thorns, so is my love among the daughters. Like an apple tree among the trees of the woods, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down in the shade with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste. He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love” (Song of Sol. 2:1-4).


Health“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and depart from evil. It will be health to your flesh, and strength to your bones” (Prov. 3:5-8).


Happiness – “Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in His ways. When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you. Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the very heart of your house, your children like olive plants all around your table. Behold, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the Lord. The Lord bless you out of Zion, and may you see the good of Jerusalem all the days of your life. Yes, may you see your children’s children. Peace be upon Israel”

(Psa. 128)!


All this and so much more received by faith, not by tossing coins, or wishing on a star. A redeemed people have all the six things listed above in spades. Paul, through the inspiration of the Spirit gives us such assurance. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved” (Eph. 1:3-6).


Knowing all this, I guess that’s why I passed up the opportunity to toss a coin in the Chinese restaurant’s wishing well. The next time you pass a wishing well or a fountain where there are coins, or look into a starry night, use that as a reminder to reflect on the truth of God’s love and rich blessings in Christ Jesus. It is unmatched! And that ain’t no wishful thinking!


Copyright 2014

Bill C. Dotson



Scripture taken from the New King James Version

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