I purchased a framed print of this verse to hang in our home when I was still a newlywed, many years ago. This verse spoke to the kind of home I wanted to create as we established our marriage. There is so much truth in these words. I knew that while I desired a nice house filled with beautiful things, as almost every young woman would want, it would take more than that to create a home. I wanted my home to be filled with precious and pleasant riches that were eternally significant.
The writer of these words, King Solomon, was not only an incredibly wise person, gifted by God with wisdom and understanding, but he was also one of the richest men who ever lived. If material things would establish a house and fill it with precious and pleasant things, he would know. Apparently, we need more than “stuff” to build a life.
Solomon’s father, King David, knew that God is the only true source of wisdom and that knowledge and understanding comes through a life devoted to learning it, knowing it, believing it, and obeying it. God’s laws and principles are timeless; His ordinances and statutes have not become dusty or irrelevant, despite what each generation might believe. We think God’s ways are constricting, keeping us from enjoying life, but David learned that real freedom was only found within His laws of human behavior.
I will walk at liberty, for I seek Your precepts (Psalm 119:45).
David taught his son these truths, and while Solomon had his weaknesses and faults, he, too, learned that a truly satisfying life was found through faithful, devoted, obedience to God’s ways.
1 Chronicles 28:9 – As for you, my son Solomon, know the God of your father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will reject you forever.
God’s Word affects our whole heart (emotions, passions, desires) and our mind (will, intentions, purposes). As we gain knowledge of His character, His deeds, His plans, and purposes, and yes, His rules (commands), we gain an ever-increasing understanding of what it means to live as a citizen of the Kingdom. We put this knowledge and understanding into practical, everyday life, and grow in wisdom.
We build our house by wisdom.
We establish our home by understanding.
We fill the rooms with precious and pleasant riches by knowledge.
Those of you who are older (like me) know that this doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a lifetime to build a home like this. It happens in the trivial, daily, minute things of life as we consistently open our hearts and bend our wills to the authority of God’s Word. It takes perseverance and commitment, and a constant renewing as we all fail daily, but forgive one another and ourselves and get back on the path.
How’s your home? Is it established firmly on the wisdom and understanding that comes from God’s Word? Is it filled with the precious, pleasant knowledge that He is Lord and Master of your lives? Or have you compromised on the truth, and allowed the wisdom of today’s worldly culture to take the lead? Take heed to the little things before they become big things and you find that you’ve built your home on things that don’t matter. The writer of this Proverb reminds us of the importance of those “little things” in his last words. A home isn’t built overnight, but neither is it destroyed.
Proverbs 24:30-34 – I passed by the field of the sluggard and by the vineyard of the man lacking sense, and behold, it was completely overgrown with thistles; its surface was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down. When I saw, I reflected upon it; I looked, and received instruction. “A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest,” then your poverty will come as a robber and your want like an armed man.