How Should We Then Live?

In Christianity on March 14, 2012 at 1:10 pm

In the 1970s, the popular evangelical writer, Francis Schaeffer, wrote a book titled How Should We Then Live?  In the years since, other Christian authors have implicitly acknowledged Schaeffer’s work with titles like How Now Shall We Live and How Then, Shall We Live.

Why does this question occupy our thoughts? It does so because—if we are not alone in the universe; if we are not simply the evolutionary product of time and chance—then we want to know what expectations of us exist; how to guide the conduct of our lives. And if we are not alone, but belong to an Other, how shall we know that Other?

Psalm 24 is a great help. Perhaps that is why it is among the Invitatory Psalms (Psalms 95, 100, 24) that open The Liturgy of the Hours. After acknowledging God as Creator, the psalm goes directly to the question “How shall we know You? And how shall we live?”

Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord?
Who shall stand in his holy place?
The man with clean hands and pure heart,
who desires not worthless things,
who has not sworn so as to deceive his neighbor.
He shall receive blessings from the Lord
and reward from the God who saves him.
Such are the men who seek him,
seek the face of the God of Jacob.

Consider “How Should We Then Live?” as a fruitful theme for Lenten meditation. Read and pray over Psalm 24. Consider the four cardinal and three theological virtues (prudence, justice, fortitude, temperance, and faith, hope, and love). And give thanks to God that, in the riches of His grace, we are not without instruction. We have His revelation in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition to guide our paths. That is Christianity Richly!

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