A Christmas List for Dad

Young parents walking in Winter

Hey men,


Sometimes we just need to be reminded of our roles as fathers and leaders in this world. The suggestions below aren’t meant to take you on a guilt trip or make you feel inadequate but rather I hope they will spur you on to being intentional this Christmas season. Be intentional with your family, roommates, co-workers, and friends.


1 … a plan for the holidays to ensure his family is loved and memories are made. Dad, what’s your plan?

2 … to ensure his family is giving generously during the holidays. Dad, who in need is your family going to adopt, bless, and serve?

3 … to carve out time for sacred events and experiences to build family traditions that are fun and point to Jesus. Dad, is you calendar ready for December?

4 … to not let the stress of the holidays, including money, cause him to be grumpy with Mom or the kids. Dad, how’s your joy?

5 … to make memories and not just give gifts. Dad, what special memories can you make this holiday season?

6 … to manage the extended family and friends during the holidays. Dad, who or what do you need to say “no” to?

7 … to schedule a big Christmas date with his daughter(s). Dad, what’s your big plan for the fancy Daddy-daughter date?

8 … to schedule guy time with his son(s). Dad, what are you and your son(s) going to do that is active, outdoors, and fun?

9 … to help get the house decorated. Dad, are you really a big help to Mom with getting things ready?

10 … to ensure there are some holiday smells and sounds. Dad, is Christmas music on the iPod, is the tree up, can you smell cookies and cider?

11 … to snuggle up and watch fun shows with the kids. Dad, is the DVR set to record old classics and holiday shows?

12 … to connect with Mom during the holidays. Dad, do you have some fun date nights or getaways planned for you and your wife?

13 … to help Mom get the kids’ rooms decorated. Dad, do they get lights or a small tree in their room?

14 … to read about Jesus with and pray over his kids. Dad, how’s your pastoral work going with each of your kids?

15 … to repent of being lazy, selfish, grumpy, or just dumping the holidays on Mom. Dad, are you a servant like Jesus to your family?

16 … to help his kids learn to be generous and give. Dad, whom do your kids want to buy presents for outside of your family?

17 … to check the local guides for what’s going on to make fun holiday plans for the family.

18 … to not let technology eat away family time during Christmas break. Dad, will you make sure the electronics are turned off so your family can interact, play games, talk, etc.?

19 … to take the lead in family devotions centered on the birth of Jesus. Dad, have you picked out parts of the Bible to read together over dinner during the holidays?

20 … to take the family on a drive to see Christmas lights while listening to music and sipping cider. Dad, is it mapped out?

21 … to study the incarnation of Jesus Christ to help prepare him and his family for the holidays. Dad, do you have some reading lined up?

22 … a break during the holidays. Dad, it’s not a sin to watch some football, nap, or relax a bit so long as you’ve taken care of your other priorities first.


Adapted from Pastor Mark’s #DaddyXmasTips series on Twitter and Facebook.

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