The Simple Church podcast features the weekly message taught by Pastor Russ Klenke.


Sunday March 26: Running on Empty

God is a filler of empty spaces and Jesus was a living picture of what that means.

You can hear the podcast here:

This Might Just Be the End of Me



Reality is we are all broken, not gently used, like the clothes we donate. We are ripped, torn, and ragged. The good news is: God makes the broken beautiful. We know brokenness isn't trending on Twitter, however, maybe we should embrace it. Why?


Mourn to Be Happy 

 Jesus made in his famous Sermon On The Mount: "Mourn To Be Happy". We are going to really dig in and see if we can figure out what Jesus meant. Because it appears that in the midst of loss and disappointment, when it feels like we are coming to the end of ourselves, Jesus turns the page and shows us a new story of hope and redemption.

It seems upside down, but maybe we have spent so much of our lives looking at something that's upside down, that it just seems right side up. We think we may discover that when we get to the end of ourselves, we have an opportunity to experience the presence of God in a way we never have before.

Directionally Challenged

There are great life lessons to be learned: The humble are fortunate Spitting in your own face may save your life Starting prayers with “thank you” does not always lead to a good prayer You might have Pharisaic tendencies When you criticize other drivers, they can’t hear you (usually) The Message translation of Matthew 6:5-6 is AMAZING! Cleaning up debris can be good for the soul

Pure & Unmixed 


The Come Back

It seems like everyone loves a good comeback story. Maybe it’s because they help us believe that we too could make a comeback.

Struggles come in many forms; spiritual, emotional, physical, relational, mental and so on.

In this series, we are looking at this incredible truth:

“God already knows solutions to our problems.”

We believe that your (and our) problems are personal to God. The solutions won’t come through formulas, they will come through faith. Even when faith has hit rock bottom, God is near.



Part 2 of "The Come Back"

Entitled: ANYWHERE 

“Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom”

said a dying man, hanging on a cross

to a dying man, hanging on a cross

Jesus meets meets us anywhere

you can hear more good news here:

Part 3 "Breakfast with the Big Guy"

Simon Peter was confident, capable, brash and bold. He talked first and thought later. He wanted to be the greatest Christian of all. He wanted Jesus and everyone else to know that he was the guy they could count on. He made a lot of promises.

Simon Peter was a lot like many of us. Have you ever said “I’m all in God, You can count on me.”?

When Peter said it, Jesus basically said “No, I can’t”.

Jesus knew that Peter (and we) make commitments that we won’t keep.

Join us as we talk through this story. A story of incredible love and patience that Jesus had for Peter, and has for us.


Part 4 of " The Comeback"

When you can't come back

Many of the stories we have shared have been about people successfully overcoming obstacles as part of their comeback process. Someone going from hurting to healed, addicted to free, loss to gain... But what do you do when you can't comeback? What if whatever was lost in your life can't be regained? Maybe you were finally pregnant but you lost the baby. Or maybe you lost your career. Maybe you lost a limb in service to our country. Or maybe you lost a spouse to cancer. In these situations, something won't be restored. Something won't be like it was. So what now? Join us this weekend as we search for answers and peace.

Keep Calm and Carry On

"Pray like it depends on God and work like it depends on you."

"Playing it safe is risky."

"There are ways of doing church that no one has thought of yet."

We hope and pray that the following words from Scripture can be as real to us, as they were to the guy who wrote them:

Romans 8:38-39 NIV
"For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 
neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord."




We looked to the timeless truth recorded in Genesis Chapter 50. Joseph said “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives”

There are 2 words in that quote that always change everything:

“but, God”

Roughly 1500 years later St. Paul echoes this truth in a letter written to believers in Rome:

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose”

It so often seems that God wants to get us somewhere, even more than we want to get there ourselves.

His sovereignty overrides our intentions.

The question at hand is this:
Do I want my plans to succeed, even if God has better ones?

Listen to the podcast to hear much more. We talked about watermelons, oak trees, bad road trips, Lombard Street, failures and (of course)……the mustard seed.

And remember “Anyone can count the number of seeds in a watermelon-but only God can count the number of watermelons in a seed.”



Anchoring happens every single day in thousands of ways.

Fear can be an anchor.

Hope can be an anchor.

If our emotions are anchored to our circumstances, they will look like a stock market chart that goes up and down daily.

However, if our mind is anchored to the cross, we can have incredible peace and gratitude that guide us through life.

What would our lives look like if we would stop complaining and focusing on the negative?

What if we would anchor ourselves to gratitude towards God?

Just think of the impact we could have on our families, friends, coworkers, etc?



This past weekend we started a new series entitled: "IF". There are 1,784 "IF's" in the Bible. Most of those "IF's" function as conditional conjunctions on the front end of God's promises. "IF" we meet the condition, God delivers on the promise! Many times all that stands between your current circumstance and your wildest dreams is one little “IF”.

What does it mean when the Bible says “If God is for us, who can be against us”?

We are going to spend the next few weeks digging in to Romans Chapter 8, looking for answers.

You can listen to part one of the series by clicking on the following link. Russ also gives a brief description of the history and motivation of Simple Church


Happy Election Year everybody!

This year is no different; it’s ugly. People are at war with each other. The “Us vs. Them” battle is on!

 We (or they) can grab some scriptures to support our (or their) views, candidates and opinions. Then, we (or they) can say “See, God agrees with us”.

 Here's a question that will challenge us and guide us;

“Can I put my faith, above my politics?”

Today we answered some of the following questions:

 "How can we participate in the election process without compromising our faith?"

"How can we (strongly) disagree with someone without questioning their faith?"

"Is it possible to be a part of the political conversation, peacefully?"

 We look to Jesus (who always put people first) for the answers. We also look at his life for  inspiration and example.

 We hope that today’s message will help you.

The way in which we view the world, depends on the lens that we are looking through. Several different things influence the lenses we use: family, friends, life experiences... How you see the world affects everything you do, it even affects how you see God.

Would you like to see God more accurately, so that you could better connect with Him? What if all it would take to make that happen was for you to look through a different lens? What if all it would take to make that happen was for you to broaden your view?

Over the next few weeks we are going to dive into the scriptures and search for direction and answers. We are going to do our best to make sure the lenses that we are looking through are the correct ones. MAYBE ITS YOUR GLASSES that are holding you back?

We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are . The more we see the world. The better we see the world. The more I see of the world- challenges the way I see my world.  

"How you and I manage what we assume to be ours, reflect our devotion to the one to who it really belongs." 

 Your time is your life. Our time is our most valuable resource. So how does God use it?

“What do we do with our ambitions when our circumstances threaten our desired destinations?” In other words “What do we do when our picture gets out of focus and it starts to look like nothing we had planned or nothing we had desired?”

What does it mean to “never give up”? Can I renew my spirit daily? Is it possible to see my troubles as “small” or “temporary”? 

Risk a little, gain a little. Risk a lot, gain a lot. It's worth the risk. 

Whether we're religious or not, we've all been in, are in, or are one decision away from a mess.



Romans 12:2
"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind"

What pattern? What patterns am I "conforming" to?

April 2016

"There's a ton of crazy scary stuff going on in our world and we can be certain that uncertainty is unavoidable. However, being fearful is optional"



What do you do when there is nothing you can do? 





Weekend of August 23 & 24

Don't Say Everything You Think

WEEKEND OF AUGUST 23 - 24, 2014

Ever say something without thinking, and then wish you could take it back?  Maybe it was a sarcastic remark, a snarky comeback, harsh words spoken in anger or frustration, or even a careless remark you didn't know would hurt anyone.

The book of Proverbs tells us that thoughtless words cut like a sword, but that tongue of the wise brings healing. And whether we say them, type them, text them or tweet them, our words are powerful—especially to those closest to us. 

This week, Russ teaches on the power of words and the need to be intentional about what we say, and what we don't say in his message "Don't Say Everything You Think"


All of us have seasons where we fight anxiety, depression, anger, loneliness, panic... For many that fight is a daily battle and its a battle that seems to just get worse. 

Week 1 - We're All In The Club                                                                        

Weekend of July 26 & 27
In a real sense we are all members of this club: what would it look like if we really started caring for one another?

Week 2 - How Do We Find Rest                                                                       

Weekend of August 2 & 3
God promises to give us rest, but what do we do when He hasn't? This week Russ talks about being honest with God when we feel angry or frustrated or confused with Him because of what we are going through.


Week 3 - The Bubble  

Weekend of August 9 & 10
For many the battle with anxiety, anger, addiction, panic or loneliness is a daily fight. Our natural inclination is to retreat. To retreat to what we call "The Bubble" But is "The Bubble" the best place to be?


Week 4 - This Side of Heaven 

Weekend of August 16 & 17
When the battle goes on, there's no end in sight, and you feel like you've done absolutely everything you know to do... what do you do?


Weekend of July 12 & 13
When you think of the best memories of your life, those events that had the greatest impact on your life, what comes to mind?  Was it a big vacation? Maybe a wedding or surprise party?  Though we tend to focus on the big things, we often overlook the memories that are created in our everyday lives but what we say, how we respond or what we do. Join us for this special message entitled MEMORIES.


One reason our past often repeats itself is that we don’t own our piece of our history. If something important has come to an end and you are starting ROUND TWO, you must look back and own your part in order to move ahead. The way to ensure ROUND TWO ends better than Round One is to own your share of the past. 


July 5 & 6 
Round Two:  Let it Go 

We've talked about owning our part in the way round one ended.  But once we have owned our part, what to we do with the part owned by others--the stuff that turned our life upside down?