Article Display
Email  |  My Account  |  Donate
Every summer I take a team of kids and teens on a ministry trip to help lead with worship and drama. I strategically pick churches that are different so my kids can experience how God moves in different kinds of churches.

These are some of my favorite churches that I have ministered at:
  • Faith Christian Family Church in Rushville, Illinois is a church of 250 people. You are driving down the highway through the cornfields of Illinois and the church suddenly appears. The church has literally built a youth camp on their church grounds. Every summer 900 kids and youth attend Summer Scream Camp at the church in the cornfields. The entire church gets involved in blessing kids that come from 50 different churches. I love this church and I love their vision for blessing kids.
  • Van Nest Assembly is another one of my favorite places to visit. The church is located in a red brick building on the corner of a blue collar neighborhood in the Bronx. The ice cream trucks stops by after service on Sunday nights and provides treats as kids play in the parking lot. Van Nest Assembly has 600 people that participate in four services on Sunday, but what I love about this church is that there are 21 different nations represented in the congregation. They are literally reaching the world by reaching their neighborhood. I think Van Nest is a little preview of what heaven is going to be like as every tribe, and tongue and people and nation worship God together.
  • The Worship Center is a congregation of 150 people in Pascagoula, Mississippi. The congregation meets in a humble building about three blocks from WalMart. Though few in number these people know how to connect with God. Worship Center is one of the only churches I know that asks kids and teens to be on the adult worship team. The pastor told me he invites kids to be on the worship team because if he can teach them to fall in love with Jesus they will stay in church.
In John 17, Jesus prayed, “I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one...”

How can we become one when there are so many differences among us? We may never be totally united until Jesus comes back, but we can do better than we have done in the past.

Here are some things you and I can do to encourage unity:

1) Know where you fit in. Unity begins with you being secure with yourself and your church home. There is no such thing as a perfect church, but God has created one that is right for you.

I once had a children’s pastor express to me that he was really frustrated with his senior pastor.

“I am a really organized person and my pastor is not.”

My response to him was, “Maybe that is why God sent you there.”

Unity is not everybody doing the same thing. Unity is doing the thing you are good at while your brother does the thing he is good at. The key is being united in purpose.

2) Ask yourself, “What does my church do well?” Write out a list of things in your church that you are thankful for. If you do this regularly you will not be tempted to be jealous of other churches.

3) Celebrate Diversity. Recognize that there are other churches in the body of Christ that do things well. Write out a list of ten churches in your town that are different than yours and pray for them. It’s hard to criticize people you are praying for.

4) Be willing to listen to people you disagree with. If you only listen to people you agree with, you will never learn anything new. Get outside of your clique.

5) Stop criticizing other churches.

6) Learn from others but don’t be a copycat. I think we are too quick to copy one another. You are doing some things well. Be secure enough in your own identity that you don’t think you have to copy the latest fad.

The bottom line is that there are many different kinds of churches in the body of Christ. We are different from one another and that is a good thing. I need you and you need me. We are interdependent on one another and that is how God designed the body of Christ.

Copyright ©  Mark Harper Ministries
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Mark Harper
Web site: Mark Harper Ministries
Pastor and Leadership Coach, Mark Harper has 35 years of experience in the local church. He is the creator of the Super Church 2.0 Curriculum, which is used in over 5,000 churches worldwide. The focus of Mark's ministry is helping leaders build strong churches and helping parents build strong families. Not only has Mark served in the local church as pastor, associate pastor, and family ministry pastor but he is also a certified coach with the John Maxwell Team. He also recently released the Amazon Best Selling book The Red Book: The Lifeblood of Children's Ministry.

About Us

The online ministry of cfaith has been helping people discover faith, friends and freedom in the Word since 2000. Cfaith provides a unique and comprehensive collection of faith-building resources for the worldwide faith community.

At cfaith, you can strengthen your faith and deepen your understanding of the Word of God by digging into the vast collection of teaching articles, streaming audio and video messages, and daily devotionals. No other website offers such a unique and extensive collection of spiritual-growth resources aimed at helping you grow in your knowledge of the Word.




Support Us

Why support cfaith?

(All contributions are 100% tax deductible)


For every Internet search you make using
goodsearch, cfaith will receive one penny!

GS Logo 250x38

Contact Us

Business Hours:

Monday—Friday: 9 a.m.—5 p.m. CST
Saturday & Sunday: Closed


(763) 488-7800 or (800) 748-8107

Mailing Address:
9201 75th Avenue North
Brooklyn Park, MN 55428


Login Form

Please ignore the “Secret Key” field; it is not needed to log in to cfaith.

Login Change Article

You need to enable user registration from User Manager/Options in the backend of Joomla before this module will activate.