The columnist Don Feder recently highlighted a Michigan State University poll that concluded, “1 in 5 adults in the Wolverine State do not want children and therefore are child free.”
Feder pointed out that even using the term “child free” connotates something akin to a disease.
Findings from the Pew Research Center paint an even darker picture when it comes to couples’ desire for children. Over 44% of people between the ages of 18 and 49 who don’t have children said it was “not too or not at all likely” they would ever have children – an increase of 7% since 2018.
What’s going on?
I’ve previously written about the ongoing war on children. We’re inundated with propaganda from the anti-natalist crowd claiming children damage the environment and place a dangerous burden on people everywhere. It’s total nonsense.
Kids are under attack at every stage of life these days. From the anti-natalists who think children are harmful, to the abortionists who want to terminate them after conception, to those who want to brainwash and indoctrinate them at as early an age as possible – it’s an uphill cultural battle.
Willing accomplices in the press seem eager to help discourage having children. According to recent media reports, the latest surge in inflation will supposedly add over $50,000 to the cost of raising a child, bringing the total projected outlay over eighteen years to just under $300,000.
Now, there’s no question America’s parents are feeling the financial pinch – but it’s clear to me the decision to have or not have children is not largely an economic one for most people. Instead, it comes down to priorities and values.
There’s no question that children, at times, can be inconvenient. They’re also time consuming.
But is there anything better in the world to spend our time and money on than the next generation?
For those grappling with this decision, there are three things worth contemplating.
The Bible is silent on any direct mandate on when to start a family, but it does provide principles that help shape our thinking on the topic. We see again and again in Scripture that children are a blessing and, barring situations where a couple is unable to have children or other extenuating circumstances, procreation is a natural result of marriage.
Changing family trends and financial concerns do little to modify human biology. Despite medical advancements, the fact remains that it’s harder for women over age 35 to get pregnant. It’s a myth that women can put off motherhood without incurring the risk of the window closing on their fertility. Medicine and science may not be able to save the day.
God’s specific leading
Our Heavenly Father loves us and cares deeply about our lives. No prayer request is too big or too small to bring to Him. As such, “let us with confidence draw near to the throne of grace,” like it says in Hebrews 4:16, and ask God to guide us and give us wisdom in our everyday lives and decisions.
Ultimately, when to start our families is largely a matter of Christian freedom – but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t ask the Lord to guide our paths in such an important endeavor.
As we state in our foundational principles, we affirm Scripture that children are a heritage from God and a blessing from His hand. As Christians, we’re doing a great disservice to young people if we don’t encourage them to prayerfully consider having children. At every opportunity, we should be talking up the blessings of family. Do we really want them to miss out on one of life’s greatest joys? Absolutely not!