The Sexual Urge and Due North

By Greg Schlueter

The sexual urge. Let's just keep it real. We all have it. Let's understand it. By nature it is both body and soul.

Here's the defining truth: The heart of the sexual urge is the urge to completion. Not found in porn. Not found in any act in and of itself. On an experiential level, people know this. They've "done it" and moved along to the next. Incomplete. Bewildered.

Yet the urge makes promises for completion. Always hoping.

Let's take our cues from great wisdom of the ages. This "urge" points to a completion that can only be found in God. It is a compass whose "Due North" is God. A capacity to participate in the total, mutual, self-gift that IS God. The end is union in God.

[For those with spiritual eyes to see, this is the great symbol of celibate priests and religious... signifying our ultimate, eternal intimacy while yet on this earth!]

Now consider Satan's great jealousy. He knows this capacity for a completion in God. Not happy. Note that the "sexual urge" rightly conceived (pun intended) is ultimately a kind of worship. A capacity to imitate and participate in God. What does Satan do to avert us from this right worship? Distracts us with a shiny apple. Magnets. Pointing toward different gods. Alienation. Brokenness.

Compass out of kilter. Is this not what we see all around us? Within us?

The good news. Note everywhere that the sexual urge is quite alive. Just not well. It's working, with it's compelling power - just not working correctly.

Imagine if this compelling compass were to be re-calibrated. Rid of the magnets. Rightly ordered. Pointing Due North. Not the pill, but in the power of God's holy will. Godly, holy, pure, powerful, self-possessed, intimate, true love. Just imagine.

We can't do it. We need a Savior. We need to be saved. Not just once, but every new day. We need to invite Him to deliver us from the magnets. We need to cooperate. In this day, this generation, He calls us to be witnesses to His great, transforming mercy. Not just a one-time event, but many steps. Take the first. Don't settle for the artificial, fleeting, wounding version of passionate fire you were designed for...

"I've come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already ablaze!" Luke 12:49

[If you have this witness and are willing to share it, perhaps are in the midst of it -- please contact me privately -- we're looking for authentic witnesses to showcase what God is wanting to do... and is doing. Please pray about it-- and for the vast multitude - that our collective, human compass once again point Due North.]
Greg Schlueter is Secretariat Leader for Evangelization and Parish Life for the Catholic Diocese of Toledo. He and his wife, Stephanie, are parents to seven children (one in heaven) and also lead Image Trinity, a Catholic family movement committed to engaging families in the great adventure of discovering our identity and living IT - we Image the Trinity. (Get IT?) 

Some Thoughts on "Media"

By Greg Schlueter

We're cleaning house. Literally. Getting ready to move.

Going through source media of the past seventeen years. Just seeing the titles is revisiting pages of our lives. Thousands of productions. Tributes honoring loved ones. ErieAlityTV that ignited a community's generosity in an Extreme Makeover episode. Amazing stories showcasing the heart of numerous nonprofit organizations.

In the faith arena, God's powerful movement through so many people... Journey to Emmaus, World Youth Day, Catholic Leadership Institute, youth rallies, Made2Worship, Presence for Christmas, LiveITStation... clips from superstars who rocked our world- Steve Angrisano, Bob Halligan Jr, Jesse Manibusan....

A very blessed, sacred time. And this media-- we're committing it all to "the ground." Fertilizing it with some tears. (No worries environmentalists, it will be transformed!) All seeds planted with hopes of continuing to reach up to eternity.

Funny thing, the word "media" - as in "to mediate" or "connect both sides from the middle."

God has chosen "mediation" from day one. He could speak directly to us (and in certain ways, He does!), it is undeniable that He has chosen to dignify humanity by speaking through humanity... through the flesh and blood of His Son... through human and material instrumentality of ink configured a certain way on paper (Word), through Sacrament.

The testimony of this "media" approach throughout the ages is the great validation of His Holy Catholic Church... not created of human ingenuity, but given by Love for Love... She is His Bride-- His Presence whose instantiation has variantly been disguised, experienced as imperfect and blemished as we people to whom She has been entrusted, nonetheless is He has remained faithful-- and She remains His chosen means of encountering and living in His life-transforming love.

If today you hear His Voice.... Say yes to Him without reservation, without contingency... in spite of your fears, weakness, uncertainty, doubt... not based upon your own calculation of what you think you can or can not do... but on the simple promise that what He calls us to, He will provide for.

If you're down, if you've fallen... in His power get back up again. God has destined you for greatness. Embrace His Mercy. You are His beloved-- not a spectator, but a participant in an ultimate drama attended by a multitude of heavenly angels and saints.

Be fueled by the awareness that one day you will see souls in heaven who wouldn't have been there had you said "no."
Greg Schlueter is Secretariat Leader for Evangelization and Parish Life for the Catholic Diocese of Toledo. He and his wife, Stephanie, are parents to seven children (one in heaven) and also lead Image Trinity, a Catholic family movement committed to engaging families in the great adventure of discovering our identity and living IT - we Image the Trinity. (Get IT?) 

Redemption of a Hay-Wired Humanity | THE REAL WAR

By Greg Schlueter
During MSNBC’s “The Cycle” on Friday, co-host Toure thanked "God and country" that "abortion was there to save me... keep me on a path toward building a strong family I have."

English-French... Russian-Italian... we have numerous on-line translators that help us understand in our own language what is being said in another. Our world is very much in need of a good Ooze to Truth translator.

Plugging Toure's words in, this is what I got: "I allowed one of my children to be killed to preserve my way of life. Death of one of my children has enabled the rest of us to be strong."

What's ultimately tragic is that mainstream America doesn't only buy this (literally, with our tax dollars!), they extol it as humane. Say otherwise and you're intolerant. Hateful. Really.

If that's not enough to pronounce our hay-wired humanity, it's punctuated by it's mode of delivery: one whose race triumphed over the ugly regime of slavery, predicated by persons using persons, the powerful presiding over the powerless.

I'm out of punctuation marks at the end of "hay-wired humanity!" but here's the capital letters, bold and underline: this situation of killing children through all nine months of pregnancy, for any reason -- was propelled by Planned Parenthood whose first masthead proclaimed it's eugenic intent: "More from the fit, less from the unfit." Their target was "unfit people" of "inferior race."

Satan is just laughing. Recall at the beginning of time it was he, the highest Angel of Light, the head of the Heavenly Choir who, from the vantage of being outside of time, who looked ahead and gasped at what he saw: God would not only create man IN HIS OWN IMAGE, He would TAKE THE FORM OF man!

With a multitude of his jealous minions, he rebelled and set himself to war against God through His children. That would be you and me.

Through the ages, how easily has he been able to present us with newer variations of the first, bright and shiny "apple" -- to worship alternate gods... in spite of the vacuous emptiness these offer! He has succeeded in fostering a culture where we reject our true image, His image - indeed, destroy His image in humanity.

Even more, he has succeeded in fostering a kind of culture where all this is boldly proclaimed, revered... not only as good, but IN HIS NAME!

Satan is laughing. And a multitude are crying.

Groggy but fresh off the long March for Life bus trip with our two oldest boys (arrival at 2:30 a.m. this morning!), where we found ourselves amidst a great sea of hope comprised of over a half-million standing for life, I was perhaps most struck by the cheering match that took place with "Keep Abortion Legal" protesters who greeted us at the Supreme Court steps.

Brothers and sisters, we've got to wake up and recognize that our enemy is not any other man or woman. It's not with Obama. Certainly, not the men and women involved with abortion. It's not even abortion doctors. No, "our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." Eph. 6:12

To think anything other is to be deceived. It's to be marginalized in this great war. It is a war. We need to awaken to that reality and understand it's nature and terms. We are at war. With real casualties, not only temporal and human, but eternal.

We need to understand our greatest weapon. From the earliest of days up till present, the love of God in Jesus Christ has been punctuated by a love so great... so alive in Him... that it entails a willingness, even an eagerness, to die... AT THE HANDS OF and FOR those God desires to know Him!

I want to be there. I need to be there. Only by His grace, we need to be there.

This generation is dying to know such a complete, holy, pure and true love that surpasses understanding. A love radiating His glory. A love that can never die, but shines with the stars -- with the light of Christ -- through endless ages.

Lord Jesus, please grant us that kind of total, holy desire. Baptize us in your very presence with that kind of love - in You who ARE LOVE. Let your holy church arise in us! Here we are Lord. Fiat! Be it done unto us, in us, with us, through us... according to You! Let Your Kingdom come!

Greg Schlueter is Secretariat Leader for Evangelization and Parish Life for the Catholic Diocese of Toledo. He and his wife, Stephanie, are parents to seven children (one in heaven) and also lead Image Trinity, a Catholic family movement committed to engaging families in the great adventure of discovering our identity and living IT - we Image the Trinity. (Get IT?) 

Our Big Announcement: Set the World on Fire!

Dear Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Curtis Martin (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) concluded a recent letter with the exhortation, "Set the World on Fire!!"

Keeping it real, personal, simple-- I've been humbled, broken, journeyed enough to recognize that He truly is the answer to the deepest aspirations of the human person. Along with Curtis and a multitude of others throughout the planet-- I have sensed that we are on the verge of a great, new outpouring of Holy Spirit....

It's with this humbled sense of Him alive... on this day where the Gospel recounts the call of the disciples to "come follow," that we say "yes" to pulling up stakes after 17 years of tremendous adventure with wonderful people in this Holy Ground of Erie, Pa. (Stephanie living here 42 years)-- to embrace the call to serve Him as Secretariat Leader of Evangelization and Parish Life in the Diocese of Toledo, Ohio.

There I will be entrusted to partner with a multitude of others in setting that little part of the world on fire... embracing a vision under Bishop Blair and with a multitude of others that "institution" be an occasion for a life-transforming encounter with Jesus Christ... an invitation to follow Him and live an abundant life IN Him.

I'm writing seeking your prayers-- assuring you of our prayers-- mindful it's not about what we can do, but what God can do through us... that what He calls us to, He will provide for. We are delighted that a number of good people will be continuing Made2Worship / Presence for Christmas, Catholic Men's and Women's Gatherings, leadership of "our" Pre-Cana... the variety of outreaches we have begun here in Erie, and ask for your continued prayers and support (stay tuned).

Wherever you're at right now, whatever is going on in your life - know you are in the midst of an unveiling miracle- an extraordinary in the ordinary, that God is calling and equipping you to do GREAT things for Him...


With deep gratitude in Our Lord, Jesus Christ for YOU, and a pledge of our continued love and prayers,

Greg and Stephanie Schlueter

Alive In His Presence CD | Music from Made2Worship

In His Presence there is Healing. Transformation. Renewal. Forgiveness. Life.

Last year a multitude spanning all ages more deeply encountered Jesus Christ through Made2Worship events. Take a moment to listen to the above preview of the Alive in His Presence CD - recorded live at the last event of the year.

Your tax-deductible gift of any amount will help us continue to see people come Alive in His Presence... we'd love to share with you the full CD (minimum $12 suggested).

"Being Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.” 

Pope Benedict XVI