And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. (Hebrews 10:24-25 ESV)
As a new session begins to get underway and the various organisations of the church get back into full swing it is good to remember why we meet together as believers. These verses sum up the importance of fellowship with each other so that we can encourage each other and stir up one another in love. Meeting together allows us to share, to learn and to love together and it makes the people of God stronger. As Donald Guthrie notes ‘Close and regular fellowship with other believers is not just a nice idea, but an absolute necessity for the encouragement of Christian values.’ Indeed the New Testament lends no support to the idea of lone Christians because a lone Christian is a vulnerable Christian however a believer who is part of the community of faith should be loved, cared for, strengthened and taught. When believers stand together there is strength in their unity that makes them more resisted to attack and discouragement (more resistant but not immune). We as a fellowship are fortunate to have the opportunity to meet together for the very reasons these verses give. Alongside our regular times of worship, we have an active Women’s Guild, a growing Men’s Breakfast, opportunities for Bible Study and prayer and to add a slightly different dimension we will be starting our Food for Thought evenings that will be on the first Wednesday of the month instead of our regular Bible Study. This is an opportunity to gather around a simple meal to enjoy fellowship and then listen to a speaker on a variety of interesting topics. It is a time to receive food both for the body and the soul, to stir one another up to love and good works. The taster we held before the summer break certainly gave us much to think about so please pray for this new venture as we seek to learn and grow together.