A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes: What About Prayer?

The following lyrics to one of the classic movies of Disney have quickly become one of the company’s most iconic slogans, with its lyrics promising that our wishes will come true. God, on the other hand, invites us to seek a personal relationship with him through prayer in which we can bring our petitions. In this article, we will take a closer look into the messages promoting our children to believe that if they wish for something badly enough, they will surely get it.


“A dream is a wish your heart makes

When you’re fast asleep

In dreams, you will lose your heartaches

Whatever you wish for, you keep

Have faith in your dreams, and someday

Your rainbow will come smiling through

No matter how your heart is grieving

If you keep on believing

The dream that you wish will come true.”

Cinderella, 1950

Examining this splendorous scene through a practical perspective reveals that certain conclusions we draw do not entirely align with the enchanting narrative they originate from. To put it plainly, nowhere are we told that God will cause us to lose our heartaches (at least not while in the world!). However, the world constantly calls us to distract ourselves from the pain of sin with both dreams and desires. In addition, we are not to have faith in the intensity or nobility of our desires but in the very God that makes all things possible that are of His will for our lives.

While it may not be a popular outlook, not all our prayers will receive an answer. Some things we ask for come from what we think we need or deserve out of life but do not have anything to do with what God knows is best for us. Like a loving parent taking care of their child, some things are simply off limits despite how extravagant their displays of need can become. When it comes to many of these films, there is no shortage of striking displays of want while watching the development of these characters.

Being Tempted To “Grant” Our Wishes

You may have seen the classic Disney film Tangled, retelling the well-known story of Rapunzel. The film depicts Rapunzel’s life as she passes time while locked away in the infamous tower. A montage of musical scenes unveils how zealous Rapunzel is, dreaming of how marvelous the outside world must be. This concept sounds like plenty of other princesses trapped or held back from their wishes, right? Rapunzel hopes to see the “floating lights,” a lantern festival display, as her birthday approaches.

After being denied by her mother to be able to see the lights, she decides to run away to get the opportunity on her own. After escaping to the forest, she wrestles over defying her mother’s order to remain in the tower. Flip-flopping from the despair of a guilty conscience to being overjoyed with her freedom, Rapunzel goes back and forth with her choice until the man who brought her to the lanterns offers her advice:

“Let me ease your conscience. This is part of growing up. A little rebellion, a little adventure, that’s good, healthy even. I know you’re way overthinking this, trust me. Does your mother deserve it? No. Would this break her heart and crush your soul? Of course. But you’ve just got to do it.”

Once their adventures are said and done, Rapunzel has achieved the ultimate success; her “mother” is discovered to be a fake and evil witch, and Rapunzel is the rightful queen of the land. Ultimately, she gets to see the lantern display.

The Magic Of The Stars, Not The Mercy Of Our Maker

As described by Disney, the plot of their upcoming film Wish, expected to be released this year, the main character, Asha, wishes for a star in the sky. Her plea, in response, is heard and answered by a “cosmic force.” The formulaic equation presented here is to show that when someone’s sheer willpower and the “magic of the stars” come together, incredible things are possible.

Being touted online as a “spiritual pre-sequel” to Pinnochio, the plot of Wish revolves around the revealing of Star. Originally introduced as a character in Pinnochio named the Blue Fairy, this character represents the force that Disney claims is what fulfills our dreams for us, or in other words, an entity of Fate. This magical creature hears our wishes and delivers what we ask for, but based on what? There is no mention of God’s love for us or mercy on us in these fantastical realms, as not many dive any further than the “feel good” surface-based notion of the self:

“When you wish upon a star

It makes no difference who you are

Anything your heart desires

I will come to you

If your heart is in your dream

No request is too extreme

When you wish upon a star

As dreamers do

Fate is kind

She brings to those who love

The sweet fulfillment of

Their secret longing

Like a bolt out of the blue

Fate steps in and sees you through

When you wish upon a star

Your dreams come true.”

– Pinnochio 1940

These notions are empty of any involvement of our very Maker and only promote the idea that we are to worship our desires. It concludes that all we need to do is want hard enough, and this unknown entity will “step in and see us through.” We drive by complete submission to God, and the latter is very dependent on our strength, in which there is no option for victory in Christ, the only authentic way.

Contrasting Prayer With Persuading

The ultimate purpose of prayer is to seek a relationship with Him despite our current physical and emotional ties to the world. He tells us the following:

“Worry not about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God.”

[Philippians 4:6-7]

When we ask for something from God (supplication), we seek Him and His will above all else. It also means that we can rest so assured that His will is best for us, no matter the outcome, that we can offer thanksgiving before it even comes to pass.

Prayer is also about the communication of our relationship. It is any time we share our thoughts about anything in our lives with Him, or He shares with us, not just a time for us to look to receive. Prayer can cover a broad spectrum of communication, from thankfulness to the confession of sin. It does not have to be formal, for the Lord hears even the smallest and most intimate of prayers we might have been unaware that we even made!

Unlike the emotional roller coasters that characters ride out in long musical segments of these hyper emotional children’s movies, prayer does not require you to try hard. If you are approaching prayer with the idea that you have to get it right to increase the chances of God picking your prayer out of a crowd, then you’ve got the wrong idea of prayer! In other words, do not treat your prayer life as a career of developing impressive narratives. Share yourself with your Maker and realize He is in control and always will be.

They Promise Your Dreams Will Come True

Wanting something badly drives us to covetousness, which usually causes us to get in the way of God’s blessings.


We could say “please, please, please” as hard as we can, but when we turn back to our lives from the sky and continue to live absent a relationship with Him, we can’t expect the distance created by our sin to leave much room for his blessings. To make matters worse, in this condition, we most often overlook our blessings and can’t appreciate them truly.

What does God have to say about this?

God tells us how he will fulfill the desires of our hearts and makes it very clear that it is in no way by our doing.

“Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord. Trust also in Him,

and He shall bring it to pass. He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light and your justice as the noonday.”

[Deuteronomy 18:10-12]


While we are clinging to the ideas of what we want and putting our effort into formulating wishes, the thought of lack usually eclipses the actual value of our gifts. Without a relationship with God, we cannot recognize his grace; therefore, we don’t feel compelled to treasure it.