Wisdom Wednesday: Don’t Build Your House First!

"Before you marry, have a house to live in, fields to till, and vines to cut."  —Spanish proverb

“Before you marry, have a house to live in, fields to till, and vines to cut.” —Spanish proverb

Have you ever considered the wisdom of some things that seem old-fashioned? Although the concept of young men preparing themselves to support a wife and family can be found and is encouraged among the homeschool community, long before they even start dating, so many young people, especially outside of the homeschooling community struggle financially after being newly married, because they were not really prepared. I have been to many bridal showers at which the bride-to-be has confessed to not even knowing how to cook. It is time to recall and revive some old-fashioned things.

When I first read Proverbs 24:27, I thought, “What?? Don’t you need a house to live in, to come home to after working in the field? Why would you prepare your fields first and then build your house?”

Ok, so I’m a little slow sometimes.

There was a time when young people learned life skills and saved money while living with their parents, so they would be ready to raise a family of their own. Young men sought to have a good job and a place of their own before they would even consider proposing marriage. Although the economy has forced kids to move back in with parents after having been on their own for a time, this generation seems to be more concerned with having fun in college and becoming independent than in preparing to become parents themselves. In fact, some shows portray having children as a negative thing, a fun and freedom stealer rather than the many joys and blessings children can bring. The word house in ancient times was also used to mean ‘family’, so the principle of preparing your fields, i.e. getting a job and being established before building your house, can apply to both your literal house and your family.

“In life, those who think about the future tend to do better than those who think only in the present. Yet those who think only in the present still do much better than those who think only in the past.” —Joe Beam

“The one who is not prepared today will be less prepared tomorrow.” —Latin proverb

The #1 reason for strife in marriages is money, although it generally isn’t the root cause but a symptom of something deeper. Men need respect and women need to feel secure and loved. Just think how much that reason can be diminished when young men are better prepared to support a wife and family financially and emotionally. I’m not saying women shouldn’t work, too, but ask any man, and even if they are failing to provide, they still feel that weight of responsibility.

“The better prepared, the more secure.” —Latin proverb

“Before you marry, have a house to live in, fields to till, and vines to cut.” —Spanish proverb

“An empty purse and a finished house, make a man wise, but too late.” —Portuguese proverb

“Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.” —Vincent Van Gogh

“A year from now you may wish you had started today.” —Karen Lamb


If you liked this, you might also like… Making Plans


About Rene Yoshi

Just a transplanted Okinawan-French Southern girl with a wee bit o' Irish, sharing photography and what I'm learning about spiritual things, including putting off legalism and religious traditions, and embracing God's matchless love, tender mercy, and amazing grace! View all posts by Rene Yoshi

18 responses to “Wisdom Wednesday: Don’t Build Your House First!

  • Tienny

    Rene, I do agree with this 🙂


  • Paige Hamilton

    I saw the Focus on the Family documentary “Irreplaceable” last night. It addressed (in a very different way) some of what you have touched on in this post. Our society, especially younger generations, do not value children, marriage or family. The lack of preparation for these things shows how little we as a society esteem these ideals.

    • Rene Yoshi

      I had not heard about nor seen the movie, but I would be interested in how the subject was presented. Thank you, Ms. Hamilton, for mentioning it. 🙂

      • Paige Hamilton

        Please, call me Paige. 🙂 The documentary explored the idea of degrading of family and marriage in today’s society, and how as a result of the sexual revolution which began in the late 50’s and early 60’s, women’s lib, and birth control, the sex, marriage, children and family has fallen apart. It really focused more towards the end on fatherhood and the importance of fathers to children and to wives. I was very touched by the film. It was only shown in theaters one night (May 6th) but you can still read about it (http://www.irreplaceablethemovie.com) and I have a feeling that eventually you can buy it from Focus on the Family (though I don’t know that with certainty). If you have a chance to view it, I encourage you to do so. By the way, you have a wonderful blog. I have enjoyed exploring it. 🙂

      • Rene Yoshi

        I went to the website and noticed they are playing the movie again because of its success. According to your synopsis of it, I can see why. Thank you, Paige! 🙂

  • Unshakable Hope

    Amen! I TOTALLY agree. Women need to feel a sense of security for a happy marriage.

  • Wendell A. Brown

    I can say this, after several cases of choosing wrong, and mostly by outward appearances, because i kept choosing the same type over and over again. I prayed to God to choose a wife for me, because he sees us all differently that most cannot see beyond the flesh. We think we can change people, and more often then not, we cannot. We can prepare ourselves for jobs, but when it comes to marriage let God come into the relationship ahead of time…have faith he will choose right all the time! He will match our hearts perfectly. Here is a poem I wrote the month I got married after a vision in a dream…it helped when it came to respecting the one who would become a great and beautiful part of you.

    Three Joined Together

    An angel came to my world with a message
    Holding a perfect triangle in His hand
    He asked me if I knew why he carried it
    I laughed at him thinking such a crazy man!

    He placed it down on a piece of paper
    Beginning to trace all of its shared lines
    And as the image came together so complete
    He then asked of me to open up my mind

    He explained how its adjoining three points
    All share equally the same space in between
    He went on to ask me this single question
    If I truly understood what it really means

    He went on to say how it truly displays
    In such a very special and wholesome way
    A wonderful side of pure spiritual wisdom
    Which many alive fail to embrace each day

    The top point of the triangle sit’s our God
    With His glory, grace, forgiveness and love
    But the two lines which went away from Him
    Went to the two creations He was most proud of

    The third line reflects Gods strong foundation
    A shelter when needing guidance the two would be
    But here in the triangle they would be so connected
    Saying this is the way our lives should truly be.

    If as a man you turn your head away from God
    You cannot hide away anything you might do
    As you are connected to both God and your wife
    He shall see and feel all you might plan to do

    It is the same for a woman as with her husband
    If she ever for some reason chooses to turn away
    God will see any paths which she also might take
    And nothing would be hidden from Him in any way

    The point of the message which he shared with me
    Was to help me understand where my heart should stay
    He said look at the connecting lines in your life
    Sharing and depending will bless your lives each day

    For God will love and embrace you both all the time
    With His blossoming love in so many beautiful ways
    And His blessings will always nourish your lives daily
    When in this threefold embrace of love you both stay.

    Never mistreat each other a single day in your lives
    Treat and love the other as you would love yourself
    And when God looks daily upon your steps each day
    Your hearts will never in his eyes leave any doubt.

    Wendell A. Brown
    © June 1977,

    I married my wife June 24th, 1977, and come this June 24th, we will embrace for the 37th year. God chose for me…I trusted in Him, what a wonderful way to live.

    I agree with all you said above and wanted to add my two cents, it might help someone in the future. Hugs and blessings!

  • Ralph

    This is a really wonderful and sensible post Rene. Thanks for writing it my friend. xoox ❤

  • Randell Bell

    I agree; that preparation is one of the keys to a successful life. To be prepared is prudent to be unprepared invites disaster. One of the courses I took after I became a teacher was the Covey Seven Habits of Highly Effective People so that I could improve on my communication skills with others. The third habit is Put First Things First. Some how I always thought this should come first instead of third, but preparation is something that is lacking in today’s society and I wonder if like any skill that was prevalent in earlier years as simply common sense has been lost or forgotten because we though that it would be picked up by those who came after us because it was common sense. People today need to be taught by those who remember that common sense is not in a book or an app to be downloaded, but wisdom to be shared from one generation to another; handed down like an heirloom or priceless treasure. That is what I find so charming and useful in your WW Blog. Thanks Rene.

    • Rene Yoshi

      I think you may be right about parents not giving intentional training in what they considered to be common sense. I think, too, the overall change in society has caused parents to neglect training and mentoring their children, not to mention the rise in absent fathers. Thank you, Randell! 🙂

  • Nate

    I suspect part of the reason is that young people don’t prepare for marriage is that marriage is fast becoming something that isn’t valued in current culture (outside of faith groups). It is an idea that is very much under attack.

    • Rene Yoshi

      Yes, and I think part of the reason it is valued less is because sex is valued more and given too easily. Those inside of faith groups generally tend to value and respect each other and themselves more and are more willing to wait before having sex. Thank you, Nate! 🙂

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