Skip to main content
Words of Life

Time For Things To Turn

By Charlotte Gambill April 13, 2014 Words of Life

“So what do you think?” came the question from my pregnant friend and her husband as we stood together on a wet, bleak hill in the English countryside. Shivering and trying to avoid being blown away by the relentless, gale-force winds, my husband and I took in the full scale of the project our friends were embarking upon. In front of us was an old, tumbledown barn with a sagging roof, rotting wooden doors, and no windows. This was not quite what my husband and I had in mind when our friends invited us to come see the “new house” they had just bought.

The barn had been weathered by storms, neglected, and vandalized. Over many years, it had stood derelict. But our friends had decided this was the perfect place to build their first home, where they would raise their soon-to-arrive baby.

“I’m not sure what to think,” I responded nervously.

“Can’t you see it?” they implored. They went on to describe a lovely family farmhouse with a large kitchen and living room and a nursery with a view. They explained how the house they envisioned in their hearts would be soon situated on this barren land.

Several years later, I sat in what is now a stunning farmhouse and ate in the large kitchen while taking in those breathtaking views. My friends’ dream and dedication transformed that bleak hillside into a beautiful home.

Today I pose the same question to you: “What do you think?” You may not be standing on a barren hillside looking at a broken-down barn, but wherever you are in your life you find your own equivalent to that derelict building. Some of you may be experiencing brokenness in your relationships, a marriage that is struggling to survive, or a fragmented friendship that seems beyond repair. Others of you may be confronting addictions that have ravaged your loved ones or coming to terms with the loss of something or someone you held dear. Still others may be facing your once-robust business that is now failing. Daily we each awaken to our own equivalent of that broken-down barn, and daily we have to decide how to respond to the desolation we see.

Every day, you have to determine in your own heart, “What do I think?” What do you say in your spirit when you see the effects of the harsh storms of life? What is your conclusion when you look at our broken communities? How do you respond to the hardship and hostility on your streets? And how can you help transform the places you go to and help the people you meet?

I believe God is asking all of us the same question: What do you think? What are you saying and doing about the devastations you face? God has already envisioned the beautiful home He wants to build, the kingdom He will establish. God does not look at your desolation with doubt or at your ruins with timidity. He is your Creator God, the God of all sufficiency and grace.

He is the God who doesn’t do slight improvements but who can completely turn things around.


Reprinted by permission. Turnaround God: Discovering God’s Transformational Power by Charlotte Gambill. Copyright ©2013 by Charlotte Gambill. Thomas Nelson Inc. Nashville, Tennessee.  All rights reserved.

Life Updates

Sign up to stay in touch with LIFE Outreach International