Acts 1

Morale and vision fade fast. This is especially true when the battle is raging. Or when the pace is blistering. Or when the task is boring. Many war veterans tell spine-tingling stories pulsating with heroism and enthusiasm. Without exception, such remarkable acts of bravery were accomplished because the troops felt fresh surges of determination that caused the odds against them to pale into insignificance. Those same veterans can tell of other occasions when the battle was lost due to low morale and fuzzy vision.

Optimism, courage, and faithfulness feed on high morale. The ability to push on, alone if necessary, requires clear vision. In order for goals to be reached, there has to be a stirring up from within...a spark that lights the fire of hope, telling us to "Get at it" when our minds are just about to convince us with "Aw, what's the use?" It's called motivation.

Coaches are great at this. We've all seen it happen. The team is getting stomped. They can't get anything going during the entire first half. But then...magic!

Back in the locker room, away from the fans, the coach and team meet head-on. What results is nothing short of phenomenal. The players are transformed through the inspiration of a few minutes with one who is a master at building morale and clearing vision.

Christians should have no difficulty identifying with soldiers in the field or athletes in a game. Our ability to accomplish what is expected of us is directly linked to our morale and vision. What we need is a charge of renewal. God understands that. His people have been that way since the beginning.

For Abraham, the place of renewal was Bethel, where he "built an altar to the Lord and called upon the name of the Lord" (Genesis 12:8). For Moses and the Israelites, it was the tabernacle in the wilderness, where God's glory rested. For the Twelve, it was their frequent meetings with Jesus.

All of us need such times and places of renewal, when our morale and vision are reignited and our spiritual batteries are recharged...when the Spirit of God can do His masterful work of motivation. When that occurs, a burst of new energy returns and we're back on our feet, winning a second-half victory on the same turf that had earlier spelled defeat.

You may need your inner battery recharged.

We cannot deliver the goods if our heart is heavier than the load.


Excerpted from Day by Day with Charles Swindoll, Copyright © 2000 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. (Thomas Nelson Publishers). All rights reserved worldwide. Used by permission.