Mark Batterson writes: “On July 16, 1969, Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Buzz Aldrin climbed aboard Apollo 11 on Launch Pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center. The multistage rocket weighed 102,907 pounds, but it carried 5,625,000 pounds of propellant. Breaking the sound barrier is one thing; exiting the earth’s atmosphere is another thing altogether. At takeoff, the five engines produced 7,500,000 pounds of thrust in order to exceed the gravitational pull of the planet and reach an escape velocity of 17,500 mph. But that only gets you into orbit. If you want to shoot the moon, you’ve got to top 25,000 mph. Prayer is the way we escape the gravitational pull of the flesh and enter God’s orbit. It’s the way we escape our atmosphere and enter His space. It’s the way we overcome our human limitations and enter the extradimensional realm where all things are possible. Without prayer, there is no escape. With prayer and fasting, there is no doubt. Like tandem staging, it will take you to spiritual heights you never imagined possible. You won’t just escape our atmosphere; if you pray a little harder and fast a little longer, you may just shoot the moon.”

Launching a rocket requires extra thrust. Moving from one level of spiritual maturity to another is something most of us want to do—but we lack the boost needed to get past our current level. As Batterson writes, the fuel necessary for new spiritual heights is prayer. There’s only so much we can do on our own. We’ll be stuck in the same spiritual orbit until we harness the power of God to move us to new levels. If we accept being spiritually static, we lose our spiritual fervor and put ourselves at risk of declining. But when our hearts are set on God and we connect to His strength, we position ourselves to experience breathtaking new vistas.

“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”