The Wisdom Deck

The Church and the Pregnant Teen

Shelly loves church.  She has since she was a little girl. When she was in junior high she started helping out with Vacation Bible School as a teacher’s aid.  She sings in the choir, she’s in the church drama group; she has gone to the local shelter with her church to work in the kitchen many times.  She is currently the president of the youth group.  It’s not an honorary title.  She has many responsibilities including attending all the church board meetings with the youth minister. 

The church seems to love her in return.  They are happy she is there and tell her what a wonderful person she is and how much they will miss her when she goes away to college. 

There is a girl in the youth group named Kristy.  Kristy comes to church every Sunday with her mother and she has been almost as active as Shelly.  Kristy really likes the attention she gets from the boys in the group. Whenever the topic of sex comes up in meetings she talks like she’s had a lot more experience than the other girls.  Apparently it’s true.  Kristy is pregnant.  She has decided to keep the baby and still comes every Sunday and sits in the usual spot toward the front. (Her mother no longer shows up.)  Shelly has learned that Kristy does not live at home anymore but in the second story apartment above her boyfriend’s parent’s garage.

Shelly was in a board meeting and brought up the idea of having a baby shower so that Kristy will have some of the basic necessities like a changing table and a bath tub.  They could even take some money and buy a gift certificate to the local department store so Kristy can buy diapers for the first year.  The board refused to discuss the matter but then it seemed like the flood gates opened and everyone who had been holding their judgmental opinions inside suddenly felt like they had permission to lay them all out on the table. 

Shelly said, “But she has nothing. We’re her church.”

Mrs. Harper, whom Shelly has known and loved for years said, “Since when does the church celebrate teenage pregnancy?”


Cut the deck and give each of your students a section.  Have them sort though the cards and see if there is anything they feel fit’s the situation.  Have them imagine themselves sitting in the meeting with Shelly.  What would you say to the board?  What would you say to Mrs. Harper after the meeting?  To Shelly? 


Say Something Like:  When we use the Wisdom Deck we have to open ourselves to the movement of God’s Holy Spirit.  I realize this is just a story but let’s imagine its not.  Let imagine you or someone you know is in that situation.  I’m going to pass the deck around the circle and I want each of you to choose one at random.  Think of ways it applies to this situation.


According to scriptures the church is one body.  Let’s treat Shelly’s church like it was one individual person.

Look at the 7 icons on the back of the wisdom deck.  Don’t think about the church’s or Shelly’s current situations…think about what got them there.  What was life like before Kristy got pregnant? Choose one icon for Shelly and one icon for the church.  Let’s pull ten cards from the deck that all look have those icons.  (Remove ten cards from the deck.  Don’t look at the actual proverbs yet.) 

  • What other areas seem to overlap with the chosen icon?
  • Could you see the church or Shelly needing some help in any of these areas as well?
  • Have you ever felt like you needed some help in one of these areas?
  • Are they all connected?

Turn the cards over and read the proverbs.  As a group select the one from each pile that would best fit the situation.
Now see if you could rephrase that proverb down to the simplest possible advice. (Four words or less,)
Write that new wisdom on a blank index card.  Take it home with you and put it by your mirror or wherever you get ready for school.  Read it everyday and ask God to help you be wise in that respect.

Coming Soon!

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