Centre Manager reflections
It’s been over two and a half years since I took up the role of Centre Manager at Brunel Manor and I thought it’d be good to reflect on how the time has panned out.
Here at Brunel we have a wonderful Team - both residential and non-residential – who all contribute to the community and we’re seeing God doing an amazing work amongst us. This place is dynamic – ever-changing - and I’ve had many great conversations around the table football or playing darts in the Court Hall, over dinner, in the corridors and, on some occasions, in “hard-to-reach” places: on flat roofs and on the steep slopes of the meadow behind the old swimming pool. Topics of these conversations have varied enormously from practical leadership dilemmas to talking to our Heavenly Father, the Creator of all. Every day there is something new, whether it’s thinking through ideas for our conference programme or creating partnerships with the local community or developing our marketing plan … the list goes on!
I’ve discovered that meetings are essential to the smooth running of this God-given house where we long for Him to be honoured. However, I cannot possibly do it all single-handedly! This is where our Heads of Department all contribute to the building of God’s Kingdom here at Brunel. Recently we’ve welcomed Mark as our new Head of Maintenance while John, with his enormous experience, has moved to Assistant Head. My role now becomes that of “active participant” in the maintenance discussions as I’ve increasingly handed things on to Mark.
An impressive Victorian building is a wonderful asset. However, with an historic building come major maintenance issues. The beautiful woods and open spaces around the Manor buildings change constantly as early summer rains and sun sees growth all around – but with the warmth of the sunshine comes the weeds and brambles too! Utilising Brunel Manor’s incredible assets exercise my mind constantly as I consider various ways of making the most of all that this place offers.
Of top priority to me are the people who are Brunel Manor. It’s the many guests, volunteers, staff and support services that make this place tick. They are outstanding, incredible, awesome and amazing!
The Woodlands House of Prayer trades as Brunel Manor. One of the biggest challenges I face is how to grow the prayer life of this place whilst at the same time dealing with the day-to-day busyness and pressures. Prayer and the growth and development of this place go hand in hand. It certainly is an adventure where I’m constantly learning and being challenged, and I’m very much aware of my need for God’s strength and wisdom in all that I do. I simply cannot do this job without Him.
Increasingly we as a Brunel Team realise that it is God Who will build this place. As a result we are becoming more intentional in prayer as we purposefully try to put God first in all that we do. We only want to His will and this begins by recognising that we are His children who are deeply loved and cherished by our Heavenly Father.