This past week someone asked me an interesting question that I had honestly never thought about. A reader responded to my invitation for anyone to ask me their life questions and then we seek the Bible for answers together through this column.
She asked something to this extent, “I don’t want kids. Am I sinning? I just feel guilty for not wanting children.”
In our desire to be objective, let’s quickly review what the Bible says about children. Genesis 1:28 tells us the common command that even people who have never read the Bible would be familiar with: Be fruitful and multiply.
Psalms 127:3-5 tells us children are a gift from the Lord and states that the man who has them is blessed. I don’t presume to know the entire Bible, but as I sit here to type this article, I can’t think of a scripture that talks about children that do not equate it with being a blessing from God. Therefore, one might wonder why anyone would want to refuse a gift from God.
But interestingly, as I prayed about how to respond to this deeply personal question, the Lord laid a verse on my heart that I have read before, but never really thought much about.
Matthew 19:12 states, “For there are eunuchs who were born that way from their mother’s womb; and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men; and there are also eunuchs who made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven”
We don’t have enough space to go into the concept of a eunuch – but at the basic level, it’s generally a man who has been castrated to take away the ability to bear children. So essentially someone who made themselves a eunuch for the sake of the kingdom of God is a man who chose to forgo physical intimacy with a woman (have children) so as to have a single focus to serve God. It’s funny to me that I never thought of this type of question in relation to men until I started writing today. A woman asked me this question and typically women are associated with child bearing and rearing. However, if children are a blessing from the Lord and we also know God’s command to be fruitful and multiply needs “two to tango” –then it means whatever the answer to this question it applies equally to both men and women alike.
And this verse (and others) leads us to deduce that some people are called to a life of celibacy as a way of serving God without the distractions of family demands.
I would also like to share a personal testimony on this point. I have been working with youth since I was a youth myself. By the age of 15, I spent summers serving as a peer youth worker. By university, I was a youth minister at a church.
When I came to Botswana 19 years ago, I worked in the government schools in Francistown with youth. I then moved to Canada where I did youth work with university students... you get the drift… Honestly, my life was so full pouring into and loving so many youth I had NO desire for kids of my own. I saw them as noisy mess makers who would take away my ministry to youth! In time, God
I got married to a dreamy Kalanga man and three years later, this lady who had NO desire for children got broody and suddenly dreamed of holding my own baby.
My point is this – times change. What you may not want today could change tomorrow. That is normal and a part of life. Equally, my point is this. I believe if God had kept me working with youth and my life was so full pouring into them that the desire to have my own children never came, I don’t believe that I would have been sinning.
Bottom line is this. Seek God first and allow Him to mould your heart and change your life goals to line up with His good and perfect plan for your life. Also, ask Him to reveal WHY you don’t want kids. Give him permission and give yourself time to really examine those innermost thoughts.
Are the reasons based on selfishness (as mine were) thinking kids would cramp my style and tie me down? Are the reasons fear based wondering if God can provide financially, because we all know raising kids is NOT cheap?! Are the reasons that you have some personal issues you and God need to sort out in your character before you feel you are fit to be a parent? Are the reasons that you have some scars from childhood that still need to be dealt with? Ask Him to help you see WHY you think the way you think. As you ponder, you may realize that there ARE some “sinful” thoughts preventing you from desiring children that your Almighty Father would happily help you work through. And you might find, as you seek God’s will for your life, that God has called you to be the Eunuch for the sake of the Kingdom of God.
As a side note, if you would like to hear more of my thoughts on parenting, you can go to my YouTube channel to find interviews with FNB and Gabz FM on the subject. God has a sense of humor because He took this woman who didn’t want kids and now I am a parenting consultant advising countless people with tips on how to raise their kids! Ha!
In summary, seek God first. I believe He will reveal His plan for YOU. I do not believe it would be wise to put a blanket statement that His will is the same for everyone. Thank God or else this world would certainly be a boring place! Send questions or make comments about this article to HYPERLINK “mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org” email@example.com or write me through my Facebook page – Mom to Mom: Parenting Consultations and read next week to find answers.
Ashley Thaba is a popular author, life coach, and motivational speaker. She also facilitates corporate team building and wellness activities. You can view some of her work on her YouTube channel: