One of Joe’s favorite movies of all time is Back to the Future. He loves sci-fi topics and time travel stories and loves pondering the what-if’s. What if that hadn’t happened? What if that happened instead? Every decision affects another. How can one small decision in the past affect so much in the future?
In Back to the Future, the pivotal moment that stood out was when George McFly finally stood up to Biff. He wouldn’t take his bullying and did the right thing by protecting the girl he loved from Biff’s advances. The whole (new) future is changed. Then at the end of the movie in the future (Spoiler!), Biff in now working for George. That one decision changed the course of his life. He would not have to live his life as a perpetual victim.
Whether we recognize it or not, we all have those pivotal moments in our lives.
Our lives are made up of millions of moments all strung together. But when we look back, certain moments stand out. Like the brightest bulb on a string of lights. These aren’t always the highlight moment-snapshots we get to witness on social media. They are the quieter moments, the conversations in the kitchen, the words you say as you leave the house, the whispered prayer in your bedroom. When we look back can we see it clearly: Ooooh. That was the day our relationship changed. When I changed.
Every day, there are moments that like for us. Moments that can change the course of not just what happens, but who we become. Maybe you feel like a George McFly that is caught, stuck in a bad place. This is how it will always be. But maybe your moment is coming, when everything changes and your life takes a different course a la Back to the Future.
But we’re not guaranteed that those moments will change our lives for the better. They also have the power to change it for the worse. It’s about how we respond. When we are seeking the Lord with our whole heart and focused on Him, we have the wisdom to respond well. Our hearts are open to what the Lord wants for us in that moment.
When you look back at the story of your marriage, what were the pivotal moments?
This is a great conversation to have with your spouse if you’re wondering, how did we get here? It’s fun to reminisce about the really fun pivotal moments. The first time either of you said, “I love you” or when you or your spouse had that extravagant show of love or showed up in a big way. But you also need to reflect on those heartbreaking moments when you thought, this is not how I thought my marriage would be. What were those decisions either of you made that changed the whole trajectory of your marriage? (Note: If there have been serious, deep betrayals in your marriage, you need to seek outside help when addressing those wounds. A trained counselor or pastor will help you to approach those conversations in a respectful, healthy way that doesn’t further damage your marriage.)
But as the years pile up, most of our marriage is determined by how we respond to those seemingly small moments. The little choices we have every day to build up our marriage or tear it down.
Your life-changing moment could be today….
When you’ve been hurt and you choose to forgive.
When you realize you were in the wrong and choose to apologize.
When your spouse messes up and you offer grace.
When you want so badly to fight for your way but you choose to see your spouse’s point of view.
When you’re so sure you should should push the subject but you choose to let it go.
When you feel distance but you choose to pursue connection.
When you stop looking to your spouse for significance and find your security in Jesus.
The closer we walk with Jesus, the more prepared we are to respond to those moments in way that brings Him glory. How you respond in the moments, day after day, year after year, will be the picture of your life, your marriage, your family.
Will your life-changing moment be today?
Proverbs 3:5-6/ Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.