Make a list of the 10 TV dads. (Only two can be animated.) What are some of the qualities that make these dads stand out?

Name five famous dads from Scripture. (No, not Joseph; that’s too easy.) Name some qualities all these days have in common. Look at your list of TV dads. What patterns start to emerge? Do we still expect these things from our fathers today?

Follow this link to a classic episode of “Gomer Pyle USMC.” Chances are your students won’t have a clue who Gomer is. Give a brief summary and play the episode starting about four minutes into the clip.

Do we still tend to stereotype dads the way our parents did? It’s not at all uncommon to see a woman in a TV commercial in the corner office with the letter CEO on her door, but dads are still shown as buffoons in the kitchen. Why don’t more people have a problem with this?

Probably one of the most wonderful passages in all of Scripture occurs toward the end of Jesus’ life when He prayed for His disciples in the Gospel of Matthew. Jesus used the word Abba, which is the informal translation of “Father.” Essentially, Jesus was saying, “Daddy.” What do you think would happen if your church started using Daddy or Papa in place of Our Father or Almighty God?

How would things be different if we started teaching “Daddy-God” as the correct term in Sunday School? What would church look like in 50 years?

The standard gifts for dads on Father’s Day seems to be ties or tools. Have you given these gifts to your dad? Imagine there is a tool belt of all the required tools that every dad should have. Look at the list and decide what each tool symbolizes a father’s role in his offspring’s life. (Example: Sandpaper—smooths out the rough spots.)

Measuring tape
Duct tape
Crescent wrench
Flashlight, batteries
Utility knife
Spare roll of duct tape

Can you think of others? Is there a better analogy for your own dad’s tool belt?

Writer C. McNair Wilson once said, “It wasn’t until I could look down on my father that I first looked up to him.” Is this true? How so?

What has your father taught you not by lesson but by example?

Where do you and your father most disagree?

What is your dad’s favorite song? What did he listen to when he was your age?

How did your dad ask your mom to marry him?

What is your dad’s favorite joke, the one he likes to tell and repeats again and again?

What stories have you heard about your dad when he was a kid that surprised you?

What stories has your dad told you about his parents?

What did your dad teach you about being an adult?

Name the best dad you’ve ever seen on television of movies.

What were your dad’s dreams when he was your age?

What is the biggest problem fathers face these days?

What do you think your father likes best about being a father?

What is the most frustrating part of his life?

Could you do what your dad does for a living?

Would you be more likely to trust a business with the phrase “and Sons” in the name?

When did you realize your dad wasn’t Superman?

Read Proverbs 4—yes, the whole chapter. Which of these sounds like something your dad would say? Rewrite it so it sounds like a dad-ism.

Read Psalms 103:13-14. Where sometimes it seems mom’s role is to nurture, dad is more of the molder, which takes time, talent, practice and sometimes learning from your mistakes. How has your dad molded you?

In the story of Abraham, God told Abraham to sacrifice his son. Abraham attempted to go through with the sacrifice, but an angel “stayed his hand.” After a prayer, Abraham changed the name of the location to Jehovah-jireh /yeh-ho-vaw yir-wh/, which essentially means, “What God sees changes what God does.” How is this a Father’s Day verse—not the part about trying to kill his son but the prayer?

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About The Author

Steve Case has been active in youth ministry for 18 years, currently at Windermere Union United Church of Christ near Orlando, Fla. He’s also a popular speaker and the author of several books, including Everything Counts, The Book of Uncommon Prayer, and The Big Book of Case Studies. (YS)

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