Christians Are to the World As Dwight Is to The Office

One just has to sit back and admire the comic genius that is The Office. Week after week, this program gives us a look into the real world of employment in unbelievably humorous and sadly accurate ways. In every episode, there are money quotes, but I have to say that my favorite character is Dwight. Maybe it's just my sick and mostly misunderstood sense of humor, but I think Dwight brings a level of comedy to The Office that is largely unmatched.

Here is a sample platter of what I'm talking about -

In the wild, there is no health care. In the wild, health care is, 'Ow, I hurt my leg. I can't run. A lion eats me. I'm dead.' Well, I'm not dead. I'm the lion. You're dead.

I come from a long line of fighters. My maternal grandfather was the toughest guy I ever knew. World War Two veteran killed twenty men and spent the rest of the war in an Allied prison camp. My father battled blood pressure and obesity all his life. Different kind of fight.

Jim Halpert: Dwight, if you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Dwight Schrute: I can travel anywhere, except Cuba, and I will travel to New Zealand and walk the Lord of the Rings trail to Mordor and I will hike Mount Doom.

I have been Michael's number two guy for about 5 years. And we make a great team. We're like one of those classic famous teams. He's like Mozart and I'm like...Mozart's friend. No. I'm like Butch Cassidy and Michael is like...Mozart. You try and hurt Mozart? You're gonna get a bullet in your head courtesy of Butch Cassidy.

The thing that strikes me about Dwight is that even though people think that he is a few hamburgers short of a happy meal, he still just sticks with his quirky personality and obviously different view of the world.

And then I thought - you know what? Christians in the world are a little like Dwight! No, not in the 'looney tune legend in his own mind' sort of way - rather that Dwight takes teasing, insults and general social rejection and sticks with who God made him to be.

And so should we, folks. You must remember that to say 'yes' to following Christ is a simultaneous 'no' to being accepted by the world. This is a promise from the very lips of Jesus Christ:

If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you (John 15:18-19).

It's not that we should go out of way to be rejected; it's just that when you pledge allegiance to Jesus Christ, you get voted off the island.

Why? Because now you're no longer a part of the self-seeking, pleasure-driven, materialistic culture that permeates our entire world. Suddenly you're saying no to things that displease God and probably coming off like you're better than everyone else. And even though you're not better than them - and you know that - others won't quite see it that way.

So at that point, you have two choices. You can back down on your commitment level and play Christian when there is no risk…or stick it out and find hope in these words from Jesus:

What blessings await you when people hate you and exclude you and mock you and curse you as evil because you follow the Son of Man. When that happens, be happy! Yes, leap for joy! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, their ancestors treated the ancient prophets that same way (Luke 6:22-23).

So if you are feeling like a 'Dwight' in 'the office' of this world because of your loyalty to Christ, take joy in the fact that you're on the right team. You may not be the bomb diggity with all the folks around you, but you can be sure that one day Jesus will look you right in the eye with a proud look on His face and say -

"Well done, my good and faithful servant" (Matthew 25:21).

To me, that is worth being a Dwight for the rest of my life!

Flashpoint: Ignite into Action

Even though the world may reject us when we stand for Christ, there are always people watching us and looking for a hope that goes beyond this life. This week remember that when you stand for Jesus, God uses that to open people's heart to the gospel message. For a great example of this, check out this amazing story:

Accelerant: Feed the Flames

And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies. Women received back their dead, raised to life again. Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated— the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground.

These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect (Hebrews 11:32-40).

Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ (Galatians 1:10).

The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name (Acts 5:41).