8 Kinds of Dads

Whether or not you grew up in a Christian home, had a good or bad earthly father, and no matter what your relationship is with the Heavenly Father, we hope you learn to pray like Jesus by studying His prayers.

Prayer is a complex topic, and this study guide will only scratch the surface of the depth of what the Bible has to say about it. Ultimately, the goal is to talk to God as Father, and to see prayer as an essential aspect of relationship with Him. Overall, we hope you use this study guide as a set of principles and ideas to dive deeper into the Word, not just as a set of legalisms or rules to follow, as that is the opposite of true relationship.

As you study Jesus’ prayer life, we’d encourage you to think about your relationship with your earthly father, including spiritual fathers and father figures. Your experiences with your earthly father can greatly impact how you relate to your Heavenly Father.

Do any of these kinds of men sound familiar?

  • The Missing in Action Man. This kind of man died or was so sick that he was unable to function in a normal healthy way. His absence was not a personal rejection but created a personal loss.
  • The Deadbeat Dad. This man has walked out on your life and does little to nothing to help you, love you, or bless you because he does not much care to know you.
  • The Addicted Dad. This man self-medicates with behaviors like drugs, alcohol, sex, porn, gambling, and so on., leaving little room for anyone or anything else.
  • The Mr. Nice Guy. This man is genuinely tender and kindhearted. He’s not big on conflict or correction, which means he gets walked on a lot and has a hard time winning at work or defending his family from harm.
  • The Selfish Dad. This man devotes his free time to his hobbies. His time and money go to himself and his out-of-order priorities.
  • The Party Hearty Pop. This man is the nice guy who most everyone likes, but hardly anyone respects. You cannot count on him since he’s immature and refuses to grow up and consistently take on adult responsibilities.
  • The Domineering Dad. This guy is overbearing, intimidating, and wins through bullying.
  • The Good Dad. This guy is not perfect, but he is present. He does care and tries to be a burden lifter instead of a burden giver for his family. When he’s wrong, he apologizes as he knows he is not perfect but wants to learn and grow to be a better dad.

Which of these do you think describes your dad? How has that affected you? How can you bring your pain to the Father?

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