I had a guest for breakfast yesterday and then went out for lunch and supper. Eating with people is excellent pastorally but also a good use of time because everyone gotta eat. Many of the families I work with have busy weekday schedules so I can't visit until they have got back from work, taken the kids to whatever club or class it is this week and then they want to sit down and eat so I just crash the meal. It is amazing how my use of time has altered since my own children turned into blokes.
So yesterday I had breakfast with someone I meet monthly for a bit of non-managerial supervision and mentoring. I had lunch with a couple of retired couples from the church. I had supper with a couple after they had finished their busy day and put the children to bed.
It was a nice day and a chance to have a lot of proactive rather than reactive conversations so felt like progress. I ended it with two new deputy wardens (the posh name we give to sidespeople round here, don't know why) and some timetabled help with all-age services over the coming year.
As I was about to leave I was asked this question, 'What is your SWOT analysis of the church?' The person I was speaking to does SWOT analyses of things such as farming, the city of Bristol (under-achieving apparently) and flood defences so is used to fairly high-power responses.
I won't trouble you with my answer. It would probably be different this morning anyway and you can do the exercise yourself as long as you know that SWOT stands for:
Interesting thing is that I couldn't think of any particular threats. We have strengths, weaknesses and many opportunities but no things or people who are our enemies. Isn't that a good position to be in?