Later this month, we will release the full edition of the 2010 President's Annual Report. It is full of information that shows what Multnomah does in a different light. It is Dr. Lockwood's 10th edition. Below is a sampling from his opening article.
Vision in a Season of Transition
The Jigsaw Puzzle
In a corner of my office, not far from my jar of marbles and my model electric train, sits a large, framed map of the ancient world. It’s a replica of one drawn in the 1600s. At a glance, you’ll notice holes in this map. Closer inspection reveals that the map is really a carefully assembled jigsaw puzzle, fixed in a large frame. It served as a central object lesson for a January convocation chapel two years ago.
The text of my message drew from Jesus’ prayer in John 17, and my emphasis was on the concluding verses where Jesus, looking down the corridors of time, prays directly for you and me. My theme was simple: Christian unity. As I stood before the students, faculty, and staff gathered together that morning, I held up a piece of the puzzle.
“Each one of us is like a single piece of a jigsaw puzzle,” I began. “We are unique, distinct, diverse, colorful, and valuable because we have been created this way. However, like this jigsaw puzzle piece, we are designed to be connected to other pieces, to fit together with them into a larger whole.
“And while we have value individually,” I continued, “we find even greater importance, meaning, and purpose when joined together. Just as this puzzle when fully assembled will display a large world map, so we as believers, when united with one another, will incarnate God’s vision of a rich and diverse world.”
At the close of my message, we distributed the puzzle pieces. I suggested each person place their piece in a prominent place as a daily reminder to pray for unity on our campus. Then I displayed the picture frame in which I had carefully joined all the edge and corner pieces of the map.
“This map, along with the remaining portion of the 2,000 pieces, will be in the Prayer Chapel all semester,” I explained. “When you see someone rebuild, restore, or promote unity on campus — and especially if you do this yourself — take your piece to the Prayer Chapel and fit it into place. You can assemble the remaining pieces of the puzzle, too. Let’s see what happens.”
The Puzzle of Stabilization and Transition
My call for unity that January morning had a specific context. Multnomah was in the midst of institutional transition as the stresses of change, coupled with an economic recession, began to pull at the seams of our community fabric from different directions.
Be sure to look for the 2010 President's Annual Report in your mailbox (donors) or right here on this blog later in January 2011.