There is a well known Jewish saying from the Mishnah of “Let your house be a meeting-house for the wise; and cover yourself in the dust of their feet; and drink their words with thirstiness” (Avot 1:4).
The idea is to encourage people to make their homes places of Bible study, and to welcome respected teachers and eagerly learn from them. The middle section is sometimes translated as “sit amid the dust of their feet,” and understood as being about humbly sitting at the feet of one's teacher to eagerly learn from him. Paul uses this when he describes himself as having “sat a Gamaliel's feet” (Acts 22:3). However the text literally says to be covered by their dust, such as in Ezekiel 26:10a - “His horses will be so many that they will cover you with dust.” The context seems to be within a home, so the idea of sitting at someones feet is powerful. However, the literal translation implies that this learning is not for intellectual curiosity but so that we can follow the Rabbi and so become as him.
As a church, a House for God, we aim to be a place where we can both come around the Word and learn from the feet of our Rabbi, our Lord Jesus Christ, just as Mary did when she sat “at Jesus’ feet” (Luke 10:39). But then take this learning out, to follow Jesus into the world - to be so close to Christ that we are covered in the dust kicked up by His sandals. Yes He taught in homes and synagogues, but He went to the people declaring that the Kingdom is at hand. We seek to be Kingdom people declaring the glory of God, of proudly wearing the mantle of Christ and continuing His manifesto in His world (Luke 4:16-20).
“So let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 24-25).
Below are just some of the ways in which we seek to encourage, challenge and support one another “so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (Eph 4:12-13).
In every morning service there is sound Bible teaching with application for putting God's word into action in our lives. We believe the Word of God is essential and that to dwell on God's Word is to sit in Christ's very presence and learn from His Spirit.
Recognising that sermons are not always the most effective tool for learning, we like to gather in small groups to explore God's Word and discuss how it is challenging and encouraging us to live day-by-day.
It is also within these groups we also pastorally care for one another.
From time to time we run specific courses to help us grapple with aspects of Christianity. Whether that is for people who are asking "Just what is Christianity?" or have recently come to faith, right through to more complex issues the church is facing today.
We only really know if we truly believe or trust something when we put it into action. Therefore, we recognise that just as Christ was active in the world and went into places few would venture, there is an imperative that we must follow. Desiring that His dust remain on us, we encourage and challenge ourselves to be Christ, not only in a church building, but more importantly in our community.
We actively support and uphold various charitable and missional organisation that operate both locally and internationally. And in so doing, we are constantly being challenged to see beyond our own limited horizons and rejoice in what God is doing and could do through us.