I have US$6,000: Should I buy a car or pay lobola for my girlfriǝnd?


Dear Aunty Lisa,

My name is Owen and I am a 26-year old man from Zimbabwe. I have been saving up my money and I now have US$6,000 which I want to use wisely. However, I am now faced with two choices and I would appreciate your advice.

The first choice is to buy a car. I currently use public transport which is unreliable and expensive. Having my own car would give me much more freedom and independence. However, a decent used vehicle would cost me most of my savings.

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The second choice is to get mɑrried. I have been dɑting my girlfriǝnd Sandra for 3 years and we l0ve each other very much. She wants to get mɑrried soon but I worry that $6,000 is not enough money for a decent wedding and to start a life together. I don’t want to get mɑrried on a shoestring budget.

On the one hand, a car could improve my current situation and daily life immediately. On the other hand, getting mɑrried to the woman I l0ve would bring me true lifelong happiness. Yet I worry we cannot afford a good start to our mɑrriage with the money I have.

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Aunty Lisa, as a woman with wisdom and experience, what would you advise me to do in this situation? Should I buy the car now for practical benefits or get mɑrried and trust that things will work themselves out? I don’t want to make the wrong choice, so any advice you could offer would be greatly appreciated.

Please help this young man figure out the best path forward. I await your wise counsel.

Thanking you in advance,


Aunty Lisa responds:

Dear Owen,

Thank you for seeking my advice on this important decision between buying a car and getting mɑrried. At your age, both choices have their benefits and drawbacks.

While a car would give you more independence and flexibility, I would encourage you to strongly consider getting mɑrried first. Here are my reasons:

• You say you l0ve Sandra very much and have been together for 3 years. If she is truly your soulmate, no material possession can compare to sharing your life with the right partner.

• $6,000 is not enough for a luxury wedding but it is a solid start for building a life together. You can get mɑrried in a simple way and focus your resources on setting up your first home together.

• Mɑrriage is about l0ve and commitment, not money. If you and Sandra trust in each other and in God, you can overcome any challenges that come your way as a team.

• You have time to save for a car later. But if Sandra is the one, I advise not to lose her over worrying about material things. True love is rare and precious.

• Mɑrriage will also motivate you to work harder and save more. Having a life partner can unlock greater success than going at things alone.

Owen, from the wisdom of experience, I believe you will gain far more happiness in the long run by mɑrrying the woman you love. A car is only metal and wheels. But a l0ving spouse who stands by your side is an eternal blessing. I pray you choose wisely, my dear!

God bless you,

Aunty Lisa

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