"The lambs will be for clothing, and the goats will bring the price of a field"
Solomon outlines one of the key principles of financial success in this proverb -- telling your money where it is going to go. When people begin to manage their money well, they decide ahead of time what they will do with their money and then they do it. If you wait until you have the money in hand, then you will be facing all kinds of temptations and impulses to spend the money wisely.
If you are going to manage your money, then you will sit down ahead of that month and plan out what you are going to do with the money that is going to come in. This is called budgeting, but that often has such a negative connotation that no one wants to do it. But, really, all you are doing is saying, "I will receive X amount of dollars next month and I want it to go to these places." It is at this point before you are in the heat of the moment that you can make decisions based upon your priorities instead of your desires.
Notice that in this proverb the wise money manager knows what the lambs will be used for and what the goats will be used for. It is not just, “Well, we'll see how much comes in and what we want to do at the time.” There is planning and various income streams are noted and earmarked as to what they will purchase.
In our day and age we often let advertising tell us what our money should be used for. We wait until we are under the influence of a TV commercial or radio ad or catalogue picture before we make a commitment to what we will spend our money on. This is extremely unwise. Sit down before the month starts and figure out how much will be coming in that month and then what bills you have and then how much you want to spend on clothing, recreation, eating out, food, etc.
It is not until you do what Solomon suggests here that you will really get a handle on your money. You must plan ahead of time where your money will go. If not, your impulses and the influences of advertising will control you.