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god Told Me Not to Have Kids

By Heath Hostetler

The first part of the mission God gave to humanity was to be fruitful and multiply (Gen 1:28). Since it is his plan and his earth, he must have had good reason for a command like this. Imagine the Garden of Eden expanding and taking over the whole earth. So much would be different. God’s provision would be readily available and our needs always met. Relationship with God and other humans would be right. Death and pain would not exist. That is the world all of mankind wants to live in. That is the world he intended for us…then the fall happened.

I am 36 and have been married for 12 years. I have spent my entire adult life running from the idea of having kids. More appropriately, I was running from the idea of being a father. While this caused all kinds of problems in our marriage I could not stop trying to build the ideal life for myself. This did put me at odds with my wife but what I did not realize is that this also put me at odds with God.

The interesting thing about building the life you want is that it causes a person to be completely consumed with themselves. Living with this kind of selfishness means that all motives, people, activities and goals serve one purpose. ME! In essence I become god. Mankind was never intended to have that kind of power.

Striving to gain that kind of power over my life resulted in terrible consequences. Most I did not realize until it was too late. First, this drove me further away from God the Father. That is what idolatry always does. I thought it was a God given right to have my piece of the American dream. Each decision I made and each day that passed took me further and further away from where I really needed to be.

Secondly, when a person tries to take power (power they were not intended to have) they must become really good manipulators. I was great at it. As a result I had no choice but to fear the things that held me back from being god. I feared the things I could not manipulate. Here are a few of the things I feared regarding childbearing.

A Difficult Past. My parents did the best they knew to do but our upbringing still had some terrible effects on my three siblings and me. It’s been 25 years since my parent’s divorce but the effects are still very present. The world teaches us to move away from our past. God teaches us to move into it and ask for his redemption. Lord let it flow!

Not Enough Money. I believed that I was stewarding what God gave me because I was committed to living a simple life and giving to Christian causes. Nonetheless money is still the root of all kinds of evil and the deepest of motivations are revealed in the way we spend or don’t spend every dollar. For me spending money on a child compromised the deepest desires of my heart, to live for myself. Lord have mercy!

Too much Responsibility. Like many men today I feared the responsibility that came with having children. Interesting thing about creating my own priorities is that I did not have room to take on God’s priorities. I only had the capacity for myself. Lord let your Kingdom come!

Be fruitful and multiply! This really comes down to letting God be God and trusting his plan for ALL of mankind. So many years have now passed but by the grace of God those years are not lost! THE HOSTETLER’S ARE 8 WEEKS PREGNANT! To the army of people who have been praying with us, thank you! We are now living in the blessing of obeying this command.


Heath and Cindy Hostetler are true servants (deacons) of the whole city church in Cincinnati. Heath oversees the expansion of the Story-formed Life, a narrative, discipleship training course. He also trains the dads in our community how to teach their sons to fish. To dive deeper into learning about a biblical view of family checkout the Re-Family Blueprint.