Welcome Back to the GABN Blog

By Aaron Menikoff
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In GABN

Welcome back to the Greater Atlanta Baptist Network (GABN) blog. I say welcome back because you’ve probably noticed that the website has been under construction. I pray that in the months and years ahead, this becomes a place where you can be encouraged in ministry.

Our aim is to keep this blog updated with short articles, quotes and interviews that are of special interest to pastors and churches in the greater Atlanta area.

Please subscribe to this blog so that you won’t miss a thing.

About a year ago, I posted an explanation of why I’ve led my church to be a part of GABN. I offered five reasons. Here they are:

First, because of Paul’s concern for many churches.

Paul obviously had a heart for other churches, pastors, and members. It’s found in the fact that he kept up correspondence with other churches. And we see it in his warm greetings to other believers. Just look at the ends of his letters. He takes time to greet the believers from the churches he visited during his travels.

Paul was an apostle. We are not. And yet his great love and concern for many churches should encourage us to love other churches as well. We should lead our churches to care for other church families in and outside our area.

Second, because of the example in 2 Corinthians 8.

Paul commended the churches of Macedonia for their generosity to the destitute believers of the church in Jerusalem. Paul does not command the church in Corinth to join with the Macedonians—he simply points to the churches of Macedonia as a praiseworthy example of love for the whole body of Christ.

As churches in the twenty-first century, we should have a similar burden for gospel-centered churches in and outside of Atlanta. Let us be generous toward other churches by praying for them, getting to know them, and where possible, giving financially to those churches in need.

Third, because pastors are uniquely suited to help other pastors.

Much of the networking work of GABN is done by local pastors. We know the wonderful privilege and responsibility it is to preach, week in and week out. We share the joy and the burden of pastoral ministry. Because we are united in this great calling, it seems wise to regularly spend time together, praying for each other, and encouraging one another on in the work of the Lord.

Fourth, because there is no replacement for sitting together face-to-face.

I am very, very thankful for state and national networks. And yet most of my interaction in these national/international networks is outside Atlanta. I can’t steal away for an hour over lunch to share a meal with them. I want to know my brother-pastors in this city. God has put us together in one place. I think that’s a compelling reason to network together.

Fifth, because pastors need to put to death an ungodly culture of competition.

As pastors we want our churches to grow. That’s a good and godly desire! What’s not godly is when we view other churches in our area as competition for church members. Perhaps without even realizing it, we become territorial, insulating ourselves from great pastors and churches serving right in our backyards. This isn’t right. Not only should we want to see other gospel-centered churches in our area thrive, but we should actively labor to see them thrive—locking arms with them to encourage them in gospel ministry.

That’s why I’m a part of the Greater Atlanta Baptist Network. What about you?

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Aaron Menikoff has been the Senior Pastor of Mount Vernon Baptist Church since 2008.