Tag Archives: Sand Dollar

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.


%d bloggers like this: