Dear Edgeboro Friends & Family,
“What are the chances?!?!?!?!”
Unless you’re someone that asks this every time you lose a coin flip just to be funny, or unless you’re someone that laughs at math jokes like this one…
Statistics show that those who celebrate more birthdays live longer.
…then you’re probably asking this question because something truly amazing just happened.
If you’re asking a Magic 8 Ball, then the chances are 50% that something will happen (“Yes” answers – 50%, “No” answers – 25%, “Try Again” answers – 25%).
And if you’re asking the Lot, then the chances are 33% (1 “Yes” answer, 1 “No” answer, 1 “Wait” answer). Upon first glance, the Lot was a box and three pieces of paper with three different answers written on them to be drawn at random after a question was asked. But for Moravians in 1741, it was used to use to give Jesus a direct voice when making decisions about the church. Selections from the Lot were done by Elders of the church with much prayer and guidance from scripture.
Back then, there used to be a position called the “Chief Elder,” a pastor essentially, whose job it was to care for the spiritual welfare of the entire Moravian Church. In 1741, it was a man named Leonard Dober. On September 16th of that year, it was time to find his replacement.
After the Lot provided “No” answers to each name the Elders suggested, they stopped to sing, pray, and read scripture to obtain guidance as to what to do next. Finally, they decided to ask Jesus himself if he would be Chief Elder of the Church. The Lot finally provided a “Yes” answer. On September 16th, 1741, Jesus became the Chief Elder of the Moravian Church. It was celebrated among all the congregations in all countries on November 13th of that year.
Jesus Christ is still the Chief Elder for Moravians today. On the Sunday nearest to November 13th of each year (November 12th, 2017), we celebrate that moment in 1741 with Holy Communion.
What are the chances?!?!?!?!
Today, some might simply say there was a 33% chance Jesus would say “Yes” through the Lot. But make no mistake about it, Jesus is absolutely the Chief Elder of our Church and our lives. Though Chief Elder sounds more like a title, it’s actually a very personal and unique name. It’s a way of acknowledging that Jesus is the “pioneer and perfecter of our faith” (Heb. 12:2) on all levels – from our Church where we belong down to our very heart which we have been given.
Are you looking for guidance? Are you looking for a Chief Elder – someone that deeply cares about your joys and concerns? Jesus says “yes” to guiding and helping you on every level. Let us follow him!
Jesus still lead on!