Guidance from a fortune cookie?
by Jonathan Spurlock
(Holts Summit, MO)
My wife and I occasionally balance our diets with some good old Chinese food! Besides, every cook deserves at least one day off and I plan on doing this for my favorite gal as often as I can!
And one of the best things about the restaurants is wondering what kind of "fortune" we'll find in our "fortune cookies". Some are vague, some are really generic, and some--well, let me tell you about the strangest but funniest "fortune" I have ever encountered.
My wife's fortune (I read hers first) was "Gamblers do not lose what they have, they also lose what they do not have (okay, I paraphrased that one a little)". That one makes sense, even though the only gambling we do is trying to make a left turn on a busy street at lunch or supper time!
We don't even purchase lottery tickets!
Now came my "fortune" and I had to read it twice to believe what I saw. The fortune read, and I quote,
"About time I got out of that cookie."
I've been in a pickle, although none have ever got into me; and I've been in a jam, traffic, that is, and I've been in both hot water and cold. But I've never been in a cookie! Have you?
Of course, none of us would ever trust a fortune, printed up by the hundreds, or thousands, to really affect us where we are. I hope that’s the case, anyway, because when we look to anything besides the Word of God, we risk losing our Lord’s clear directions.
Some of us may have heard of the old custom
(?) of “Bible-dipping”, when the reader would open the Bible at random, then close his/her eyes, and supposedly be led by the words discovered—but if your eyes are closed, how can you read anything? I know, you were supposed to OPEN your eyes (when?) in order to read.
It goes without saying that this “system” can lead to some humorous, if not downright strange, “messages” from the Word! One classic involves the man who sought guidance and found the verse, “Judas went and hung himself”. Startled, he tried again, and found “go and do thou likewise”. Still not sure what to do, he tried a third time and found, “that thou doest, do quickly”.
There is no record if he followed that “advice” or guidance (I hope he tried again!) Certainly, this example has been used many times, and I take no credit for it, except to show that if we try any kind of random, unfamiliar “guidance” from the Bible, we might as well be trusting our future to fortune cookies. If we’re walking with the Lord, however, we’ll know His will and we’ll want to do it. John 7:17 says, “If anyone is willing to do His will, he will know of the teaching, whether it is of God or whether I speak from Myself (NASB).”
Fortune cookies are a nice dessert, and sometimes the fortunes themselves are downright funny, but I sure don’t want to trust my future to something like those. No, I have God’s Word to guide me and beloved, that’s enough for me. God’s Word can be the same for you, too!
Scripture quotations are taken from the NASB.