What Are The Requirements for Going to the Next Level?
Prayer 101 – Part 3
Let me start by reminding you that this is “next level” prayer. I must continually say this. Do you know what it means to go to the next level? Think about it for a moment. Going to the next level means a couple of things:
1) we are at one level, but there’s a level that exceeds the one we’re at,
2) there is room for improvement,
3) you must improve to get to this new level,
4) you can’t simply get to the next level by doing nothing or not doing something differently, and
5) it means you have a choice to make, whether to remain where you are or to move ahead.
With that said, what might a person who desires to go to the next level need to prepare for if they desire to take the journey? In other words, what might be some of the prerequisites?
What are the prerequisites for Prayer 101?
What are some prerequisites for taking prayer to the next level? While I don’t really want to make up rules for anything, especially prayer, there is something that you need to know anytime you begin to take anything to the next level.
Prayer 101 means that you’re going to move to the next level of prayer. In some churches this is referred to as taking next steps. Any time we take steps that push us beyond the steps we’ve previously made or normal behaviors of others, we find ourselves in a new classification of people. I call them uncommon. In other words, when you move from a common level and understanding, to something greater, the result is you become uncommon. Society calls this leadership or a leader. Regardless of the terminology this type of accomplishment comes with some hidden requisites. Since I’m a person of faith, I found in the Bible a list of some of these leadership characteristics that should be considered prerequisites when going to the next level.
In the Christian church that I grew up in they had a scripture that discussed the role of a deacon. This was important in my family because my dad was the chief deacon. However, based on how we were taught, the deacons had more requirements to follow and live up to than even the ministers, preachers, and pastors. Two thoughts I’d like for you to consider here. One, the word “deacon” in the Bible is misunderstood, it really means servant, minister, or appointed leader in the local church. Two, the phrase “requirements to follow and live up to” means he or she would have to come up to a higher level, a new level, the next level. He or she would have to rise above what’s normally tolerated. Therefore the word “deacon” applies to anyone who desires to go to the next level as a leader in the Christian church. The same is true for anyone who desires to go to the next level in prayer, he or she must rise above their current level.
Let’s take a look at these requisites, requirements, or next level prerequisites, line by line.
- Become a good manager of your responsibilities.
“A church leader [next level person] is a manager of God’s household”
A next level person is one who manages what God has given her or him well. A manager is one who has a responsibility to wherever they’ve been appointed. Where is your area of responsibility when it comes to prayer? Are you responsible for your family, your church, your city, etc.?
- Eliminate wrongdoing from one’s life.
“[A next level person] must live a blameless life.”
A next level person and especially a pray-er should work very hard at eliminating wrongdoing from their life. In other words, a leader is never going to continue going down the wrong path, but rather make the corrections necessary to get on the right path. This is next level stuff, therefore it takes next level actions.
- Don’t become arrogant nor have a bad temperament.
“[A next level person] must not be arrogant or quick-tempered.”
A leader doesn’t get to be arrogant nor have a bad attitude. In fact, a leader doesn’t get to have a default attitude, she or he must have a good temperament. A next level pray-er must have a good attitude and doesn’t have the luxury of being arrogant.
- Don’t over indulge in substances, violence, or dishonesty.
“[A next level person] must not be a heavy drinker, violent, or dishonest with money.”
A leader knows when enough is enough. A leader understands that he or she must have more discipline in their actions than a normal person has. When we go to the next level (in prayer), we have decided to act and behave at a new level.
- Enjoy having people around you.
“[A next level person] must enjoy having guests in his home.”
I like this requirement of a leader because the average person doesn’t like having people around them, up close and personal. You see the average person has that mask on and if you get too close you might see what’s behind their mask. A next level person is good with having people around because a next level person isn’t putting on. This is next level prayer I tell you.
- Love what is good.
“[A next level person] must love what is good.”
Does it surprise you that someone must be told or given a requirement to love what is good? You know what this says to me? The average, ordinary, normal person is not by default a lover of what is good. I know that might surprise you, but the truth is, a normal person doesn’t know good because they don’t know God who is good. Next level here we come!
- Be full of information and morals.
“[A next level person] must live wisely and be just.”
As a leader, you don’t get to be uninformed in the area that you lead. You must be full of information. You must have greater morality than the average person. If you’re not going to seek knowledge, wisdom, justice, and morality, then you want to remain where you are. This is stuff for a next level person. How else can you take pray-er to the next level, if you’re not going to go to the next level?
- Live a life of commitment and discipline.
“[A next level person] must live a devout and disciplined life.”
Have you ever met that person who was all over the place in their thinking and actions? That’s not what a leader is. He or she is a person who honors commitments. She or he is a person of discipline. Are you going to pray every day? Have you scheduled your time to talk to God? Is this a priority? Can God count on you to pray for your family? Can your family count on you to pray for them? This is next level prayer y’all!
- Believe strongly in what you believe.
“[A next level person] must have a strong belief in the trustworthy message he was taught.”
There is something I can not stand and that’s a weak believer. If you’re going to be a believer then be a believer. Don’t be weak in your faith, that’s like not having faith at all. A next level pray-er is not one who has weak convictions. This person is strong, passionate, driven, and motivated. That’s what the next level looks like. We have enough weak, unenthusiastic, and discouraged believers, it’s time to take it to the next level.
- Be an encouragement to others in what you believe to be righteous.
“[A next level person] will be able to encourage others with wholesome teaching and show those who oppose it where they are wrong.”
Encouragement is what a next level person does. He or she doesn’t have time to be defeated, broken, and needy. A next level person uses everything she or he has to use. God has given us more than what we need therefore it’s enough to encourage, teach, and lead others in the right direction. A next level pray-er is full of encouragement for they’ve been in the presence of God where there is nothing but joy. This is next level prayer!
Now that’s a set of prerequisites that are guaranteed to take one to the next level. If we take these ten requisites, what would your life in prayer look like? Wouldn’t your prayer results improve? Sure they would. Anytime you replace old thinking with new habits, change occurs and you become something new.
Question: how do you measure up with this list of prerequisites of being a next level person and pray-er?
Reference #1: Titus 1:7-9 NLT, Bible.com, accessed August 26, 2021, https://www.bible.com/bible/116/TIT.1.7-9.NLT
All Scripture references used by permission, see our Scripture copyrights.