Rory: To save you, I could do anything.
Amy: Prove it.
Rory: But I can’t take you too.
Amy: You said we’d come back to life. Money-where-your-mouth-is time.
Rory: Amy, but—
Amy: Shut. Up. Together. Or not at all.
The Doctor: What the hell are you doing?!?!
Amy: Changing the future. It’s called marriage.
Because of their unique status as the Doctors companions/in-laws, Amy and Rory’s relationship faced a host of unique and frustrating challenges that, thankfully, most marriages today will never have to face. There’s the little issue of Rory’s multiple, heartbreaking deaths, which towards the end had become so routine that he literally pokes fun at the concept of death itself. In one of these incarnations, his body was used to murder his soon-to-be wife against his will. Amy, of course, got kidnapped and replaced with a synthetic flesh clone so that their baby could be used as a weapon against the Doctor. In the midst of that ordeal, Amy was rendered unable to have other children–a wound both physical and emotional that penetrated her so deep that it threatened to end their marriage entirely.
And yet, in the midst of all of these difficulties, their love remained strong, their devotion to one another prompted them to perform amazing acts of devotion that defied the very laws of time itself. Rory, body preserved as living plastic, resolutely guarded the Pandorica within which his fiancee was preserved for 2000 years, to keep her safe until she could be revived. Aged and embittered by abandonment in a desolate quarantine facility, Amy undid her own personal timeline to save Rory and give her younger self the life that she had missed with him. And in their very last adventure, their final run with the Doctor, Amy and Rory are at it again, creating another paradox by sacrificing themselves rather than facing an infinite temporal loop of loneliness and separation.
And it works.
Amy and Rory, choosing sacrifice together over any kind of existence alone, destroy the feeding frenzy motel created by the Weeping Angels, wiping out all but one straggling survivor. They change the future. And then, in one last moment of decision, they change it yet again by removing themselves from it–Amy chooses to be taken back to New York to be with Rory, to live their lives together in the past. In doing this, she creates a fixed point in time–something that no companion has done before or since, at least not of their own power (Rose technically made a fixed point in time when she resurrected Jack, but she sort of had the entire power of time and space flowing through her at that moment so I’m not sure it counts).
When God created the institution of marriage, it was not a decision made for convenience or expediency or utility, although many of those things do enter into the marriage relationship at least at some point. It was to right a fundamental wrong of creation: “It is not good for man to be alone.” It was to enable those who bear the image of God by design to reflect the image of God in action–in relationship, just as God Himself exists as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It was to bring about new generations of humanity, brought up to know the love of God and continue God’s work in the world. Marriage was created to change the future. And it has, for good and for ill.
Think about the ways our society understands marriage. The reputation of marriage is overall weak and unfavorable. Why is that? Because people have gotten married and treated the institution of marriage disrespectfully. Men have harmed their wives. Women have harmed their husbands. He walked out, She walked out, They broke it off mutually. Affair. Abuse. Apathy. Annoyance. Big or small, justifiable or not, marriages have ended often. Too often. This has colored our understanding not only of marriage, but of the nature of family and relationships in general. This has left psychological scars on the hearts and souls of countless spouses and children and lovers and friends. And the future we are living in is the future that we have created with marriage.
And yet we still long for something better. The overwhelming majority of people, at least in America, still desire to get married and believe it is an important part of life. Marriage still accompanies most understandings of love and commitment. I’m reasonably confident in the belief that most people don’t like the fact that divorce is so prevalent in our society, and long for a lifetime commitment in a marriage of their own. The future we are living in does not have to be the future that always is, but do you know what it will take?
Marriage. Changing the future.
The way I understand it, that will only happen–it CAN only happen–when we allow the Lord to transform our marriages into the kind of devoted, unyielding, time-and-space-defying unions that will stick together and demonstrate radical acts of love no matter what. In reality, that love only shows up where God shows up. But it’s available. And it can change the future.
If you are married, you owe it to yourself, your children, your friends, and the generations that will follow you to make your marriage amazing. Make it something worth writing epic science fiction stories about. Make it beautiful. Make it funny. Make it delightful. Make it the Lord’s. Make it a marriage that lasts through all the challenges of time and space–because that’s the kind of marriage that changes the future.