Principles for Local Church 06 Know When to Shift Lanes

Being in a local church is absolutely awesome. Besides salvation, the baptism of the Holy Spirit and your spouse, local church is the best gift Jesus has given you. You should not be a church-hopper. But sometimes there is a season to shift lanes in a local church. You might have been a deacon for a few years, but God is shifting your lane to become an elder. You might change small group, the serving team you are on, you might change what you do and who you are with. You might step into a new season.

You need to learn when to be able to detect a new season in every area of your life, but because church life is such an important part of your life, you need to be able to know when a season change is coming in your church life so much so! It is very important.

Now sometimes God will just tell you. You will be praying and God will say – join the music team, join the ushers, join the teas and coffees team. That’s great when that happens. Other times, you will just know that you know that you know. I see this like a spiritual instinct. Animals have instincts, they know where to migrate to but they have never been there before, they can do some amazing things that they have never learned. They are born and can hunt instinctively. Animals never watch porn or have marriage counselling but instinctively know how to make baby animals, they know when they are in heat, how to attract a mate without going to a seminar. They know when they need to store extra food for winter.

When we get born again we get spiritual instincts. There are some things we just know. A lot of people have come to Tree of Life Church, and they tell me “I know I need to be in this church”, they just know. Spiritual instinct.

I love it when we just know things. I want all of us to be in the right lane, when to slow down, when to serve more, when to serve in a different place, when to get involved in certain things. It means the church advances in new ways.

We need to know which lane is ours – what task is God choosing us to do in the local church? If you are in Tree of Life Church and you know in your instincts that God wants you in Tree of Life, then you have something to offer Tree of Life. You are there for a reason. Do you “know” what that reason is? If so, move into that lane with dignity and care. If you don’t, keep coming, and you will one day just know. It’s instinct.

Published by Tree of Life Church

We are a growing network of growing churches, with services weekly in Dagenham, Guildford, Watford, Croydon, Brentwood and Dorset. We are also planting churches in Cambridge, Suffolk, West Midlands and Hemel. Find out more at, and

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