All posts written by Daniel Montgomery

Poetry & The Preacher

Poetry blog post design by Chris BennettApril is National Poetry Month. I enjoy poetry but am not an avid reader. To me, poetry is like an ethnic dish that you have every once in a while, and it’s so delicious that you think, “Why don’t I eat this more often?”

Here are a few poets who inspire me:

What other poets should I read? Which poets and poems inspire you?

A Great Glory But A Terrible Hope – It’s Derby Time Again

Last year I preached The Gospel According To Derby, which you can hear at I can’t believe a full year has gone since then, but I’m excited about the Kentucky Derby as always. I hope you are too, because it’s just a week away.

A Great Glory

Many have said the Kentucky Derby is the greatest two minutes in sports, and it’s hard to argue with that. And this year I’ll be watching it in person at Churchill Downs. The aura of the Derby that settles over this city is incredible. For those of you who love it and for those of you who just don’t get what all the excitement is about, check out these five great, short resources:

A Terrible Hope

As thrilling as Derby is, it is so easy to make an idol out of favorite horses, jockeys and the race itself. But like all idols, they cannot save us and they cannot satisfy the longing for greater glory that we all have:

 A horse is a vain hope for deliverance; 
despite all its great strength it cannot save. 
But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him, 
on those whose hope is in his unfailing love, to deliver them from death and keep them alive in famine (Psalm 33:16-19).

As I said in the Gospel According To Derby,  the problem with sports comes when I find myself rearranging my schedule to make sure I don’t miss a game. It comes when I neglect my responsibilities as a husband and father so I can play a sport or watch one on TV. It comes when I let myself get depressed for days when my team loses, and overwhelmed with joy when they win. It comes when sports become our hope, refuge, place of escape, and our source of joy.  When these things happen, sports like the Kentucky Derby become my functional savior.

How can we keep Derby and other sports in proper perspective? Do you have any accountability checklists or time constraints that help you keep things in check?

What are your favorite Derby traditions?

Don’t Trade Conversation For Connection

Sips artwork by Chris Bennett of Sojourn ChurchThis quote is spot-on, and heartbreaking:

We are tempted to think that our little “sips” of online connection add up to a big gulp of real conversation. But they don’t. E-mail, Twitter, Facebook, all of these have their places — in politics, commerce, romance and friendship. But no matter how valuable, they do not substitute for conversation.

It comes from a New York Times article by Sherry Turkle called “The Flight From Conversation.” I don’t say this often, but you really should click the link, read the entire article. Then reflect, pray and discuss it with your spouse, your kids, your community group.

The internet is a great tool. After all, here I am with my own blog. And Facebook page. And Twitter feed. But let’s keep priorities straight. Be where you are.

Sexual Purity In A World That Mocks It

2012 Pursuing Purity Conference AdOn Saturday, May 5 I’m speaking on the main stage at the Pursuing Purity Conference at Southern Seminary in Louisville. This is a two-day conference designed to equip pastors, parents, and college and seminary students with practical tools and strategies for pursuing sexual purity, opposing sexual exploitation, and guiding others to live holy, pleasing lives before God.

Our culture says “No” to sexual purity. Our culture seduces us and our kids to reduce one of God’s greatest gifts to cheap thrills fail to satisfy, but instead lead to fractured homes, shattered dreams, broken hearts.

But God says “Yes!” to restored relationships, loving marriages, solid friendships, peaceful homes and great sex.

I hope to speak on this in a way that give parents and pastors the tools they need to protect and instruct their kids in the ways of the Lord. And I want students to come away from this talk with a framework for seeing past the lies of our age.

The conference will feature many excellent teachers and speakers, like my friend Dr. Bruce Ware. As the Pursuing Purity website says:

Breakout sessions will biblically and practically address multiple topics related to sex and sexuality, so that each attendee will be able to find the teaching they need to grow and lead others in this area of spiritual formation.

If you’d like to attend this conference, REGISTER HERE!

Sovereign Grace Moving To Louisville: What Does Sojourn Think?

Recently Sovereign Grace Ministries announced they’re moving to Louisville and are planting a new church here, led by C.J. Mahaney. Several of you have asked what I think of this announcement.

I think it is wonderful.

Sojourn leaders have a deep and abiding friendship with Sovereign Grace. Bob Kauflin has preached here and led workshops for Sojourn Music, and Dave Harvey has taught here as well. Finally, C.J. Mahaney is my dear friend and mentor, and I am so thankful for the Sovereign Grace team.

I’m also thankful for the church they come from, Covenant Life in Gaithersburg, led by my friend Joshua Harris. Josh is a gifted writer and preacher. Covenant Life is definitely in great hands to continue impacting Maryland and beyond.

Meanwhile with nearly a million people in the city of Louisville, there is always room for more churches. Some might say we’re a religious city, and that is true. But as one pastor expressed, we’re an “overchurched, undergospeled” city. So when a church springs up that emphasizes the centrality of who Jesus is, what he has done and what he’s promised to do, we welcome  that church as a friend and neighbor.

  • C.J. Mahaney in Louisville is great for me personally because I have a mentor in my backyard.
  • It’s great for the entire Sojourn congregation because we’ll be able to collaborate on leadership development and theological training.
  • It’s great for Sojourn Network and Sojourn Music as we work together and learn from each other in church planting and worship ministry.
  • And it’s great for Louisville. In Sovereign Grace, we’ve all gained a neighbor who will work for the good and pray for the peace of this city we call “home.”
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