The Five

Residents of Houston tell me they can tell I have long lived in Southern California by my use of the definite article before a highway number. One does not just drive highway five, a man motors down The Five.

The definite article in danger from Twitter is evidently alive and well in So-Cal designations of roads. This says something about what we value in Southern California. Our roads are our pathway to Heaven either through the martyrdom of traffic, sometimes bloody and just endured, or to the Happiest Place on Earth or the beach or the mountains . . .

And so we drive The Five.

I have noticed that computer activities rarely get “the” attached to them. We don’t use The Google, we google. The Net itself appears the only object worthy of the singular honor of “the.” My children wonder if weather in Houston will be the great thing: The Humidity. Perhaps it will the fact that Houston is rapidly becoming the center for Christian thought: The Ideas.

I don’t know yet, but I shall see.

As for what deserves this treatment in my life, I suspect only four things really: the Good, the Truth, the Beautiful, and the Lord God.

The Good should inform every movement I make. The Truth should be my guide while The Beautiful stirs up love in my soul and drives me to the Lord God. It is The Almighty, in His singularity, that captures all the other objects of my life. All roads lead to The Way, all orthodoxies open The Door, and the darkness in my soul disappears before The Light.

Sometimes when I am must depressed, and I struggle mightily with sorrow, I look up and saw a star, there are few visible here in LA, and it washes over me that there is The Star of David. This does not take away the sorrow, but it adds, sometimes, a note of intense joy. Why? I think partly because the designation, the singular and most definite article, is not my choice for Jesus, but His divine right. There are many men named Jesus, a saw one the other day in Disneyland, but The King Jesus is splendidly Him.

Diversity is rightly prized, but it is unity that is hardest to find. Chaos in this broken world is everywhere . . . and diversity only avoids chaos within an ordering, a cosmos. The Logos is The Ordering that allows for diversity in multiplicity. I can be me, eccentric and full of wonder, because there is The Order in which diversity can flourish without degenerating into ruin.

Christianity is the Structure that allows for infinite patters of beauty, truth, and goodness to form within The Good. We can be kings, because He is The High King. We can be priests, because He is the High Priest. We can be brides, because He is The Groom. He is The Melody and we are trills, echoes, and variations running under it.

Soon I shall drive the 10 to Houston, but really the road is just highway 10. The Road goes every onward from my Los Angeles door through Houston to Paradise. My I walk The High Way to The End.


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