The Sand Dollar

31 Jul


Judy Wills



As I’ve mentioned before – I grew up in the land-locked state of New Mexico. Those of you unfamiliar with New Mexico – it really IS one of our 50 states. Get out your atlas and look. See? Find Texas…go west to New Mexico…then west again to Arizona. I can assure you that there is a state between Texas and Arizona. Heard of Albuquerque? Or perhaps Santa Fe? Those are two of the main cities in New Mexico. The New Mexico Magazine, in every issue, has a page dedicated to “One of our 50 is Missing.” Most of the antidotes are hilarious – but some really get my temper riled up! I’m afraid our teachers aren’t teaching U.S. geography these days!


All that to say that, when we moved to Florida (Tyndall AFB, Panama City), we were living within 100 yards of the Gulf of Mexico. What a change! And we loved it. Fred had lived on Tyndall AFB with his family in his youth, when his father was stationed there as Base Chaplain in the 1950’s.



One of the things I learned about and enjoyed so much was the Sand Dollar. It is a living creature – according to Wikipedia: refers to species of extremely flattened, burrowing sea urchins…Related animals include other sea urchins, sea cucumbers, and starfish.

The legend of the Sand Dollar states: Visit a shell shop and you may find poems or sand dollars with the Legend of the Sand Dollar, which references Easter, Christmas and Jesus. Some references say that the 5-pointed “star” in the center of the top of the sand dollar’s test [skeleton] is said to represent the Star of Bethlehem that guided the wise men to the baby Jesus. The 5 openings in the test are said to represent Jesus’s wounds during his crucifixion – the 4 wounds in his hands and feet and the 5th in his side. On the underside of the sand dollar test, it is said that there is an outline of a Christmas poinsettia. The legend also says that if you break open a sand dollar, you’ll find 5 “doves of peace” inside. These doves are actually the 5 jaws of the sand dollar’s mouth (Aristotle’s lantern). (Credit About Marine Life)

In any case, I found them to be fascinating. When our oldest daughter, Karen, went to a camp one summer, she brought home a large sand dollar (some might call it a sea biscuit, because of its size). I still have it, and treasure it.




As we were leaving Panama City, one of the ladies in our church, an artist, painted a beach scene on a sand dollar for us. I think it’s beautiful, and reminds me of her, whenever I see it.



But I think my favorite sand dollar was one I found in a shop in Panama City. It is a pendant, dipped in gold leaf, and I thoroughly enjoy wearing it. It is so very delicate, and I always receive comments about it when I wear it.



I’ve heard about the legend of the sand dollar, and can definitely see where it might be a reference to Christ. I’m all for anything that brings Christ to the forefront.

God’s creation is beautiful – all of it. I hope you agree.


10 Responses to “The Sand Dollar”

  1. Lois Billings August 24, 2017 at 10:57 am #

    Can you please whethet or not you have ever heard of ancient sand dollars having been found in — please do not laugh–Arizona?
    Thank you,
    Lois Billings (text 626-823-4679)


    • ludyja August 24, 2017 at 11:18 am #

      Hi Lois. Unfortunately, I’ve never heard of sand dollars being found in Arizona. And I did NOT laugh! There’s enough crazy stuff found in odd places, that nothing surprises me anymore. I did get all my sand dollars in Florida, however. Sorry I can’t help with that. Did you try to Google it?


  2. Caden February 22, 2017 at 11:31 am #

    Minä palaan melkein vuosittain Jane Austenin kirjojen pariin. Saan niistä aina jotain vähän uutta… Ylpeys ja ennakkoluulo on osa elr¤mänÃytmiäni. Ennestään tutun kirjan lukemisessa on erilaista rentoutta kuin uuden. Tosin täytyy myöntää, että nykyään on niin valtavasti lukemattomia kirjoja odottamassa vuoroaan, että täytyy olla melkoisen väsynyt olo ennen kuin vanhoihin tuttuihin tulee palattua 🙂


  3. Onisha Ellis July 31, 2016 at 9:22 pm #

    The pendant is lovely. I can see why you enjoy wearing it.


  4. DiVoran Lites July 31, 2016 at 10:59 am #

    Lovely post, Judy. Great pictures, too.


  5. Anonymous July 31, 2016 at 9:36 am #



  6. Anonymous July 31, 2016 at 9:34 am #

    delightful! As I was reading your post on the “Sand Dollar” I raised my eyes up to my shell collection just above my computer, There sits a beautiful white Sand Dollar. There are others, but this one is larger…truly beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anonymous July 31, 2016 at 10:19 am #


      There’s a lovely little legend
      That I would like to tell
      Of the birth and death of Jesus
      Found in this lowly shell.

      If you examine closely
      You’ll see that you find here,
      Four nail holes and a fifth one
      Made by a Roman’s spear.

      On one side of the Easter Lily,
      Its center is the star.
      That appeared unto the shepherds
      And led them from afar.

      The Christmas Poinsettia
      Etched on the other side,
      Reminds us of His birthday
      Our happy Christmastide.

      Now break the center open
      And here you will release,
      The five white doves awaiting
      To spread Good Will and Peace.

      This simple little symbol
      Christ left for you and me,
      To help us spread His Gospel
      Through all Eternity.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Anonymous July 31, 2016 at 10:23 am #

        Louise Gibson (The Legend of he Sand Dollar is my contribution to your lovely post, Judy.

        Liked by 1 person

    • LOUSE GIBSON July 31, 2016 at 11:58 am #

      ‘Anonymous” is Louise Gibson. I appreciate your referenc to the Sand Dollar. That lead me to find the “Legend of he Sand Dollar” Facinating!

      Liked by 1 person

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