Proclaiming the Year of the Lord’s Favor

2015 has officially been inaugurated as our new year. Fireworks lit up the night sky; champagne toasts were made; kisses were exchanged; and well wishes were given. 2014 is over and in the past, and in the past is exactly where I will leave it. That is not to say that 2014 was not wonderful. I quit a job I had no passion for and began my journey to become a teacher. I got the chance to do life with amazing girls in my Life Group. I branched out of my comfort zone. I learned to be content in my singleness (and am continuing to do so). 2014 was incredible in many ways, but it’s time for 2015.

A couple of weeks ago, Holy Spirit placed a word on my mind- a word that I have received as my word for 2015. The word was simply soon. Now, when I first head soon, I wasn’t sure it was from Holy Spirit because my walk with Him wasn’t where it should have been- basically, I had been neglecting spending meaningful time seeking the face of Jesus for a few weeks. Sure, I still went to church and loved the messages and worship, and I still went to Life Group and loved being a part of community, but I wasn’t investing my time in the Creator of community as I should have been. So I wasn’t sure I heard the Lord correctly; really, I wasn’t sure it was the Lord at all.

So, I began seeking the Lord’s face. I began calling on His name with increasing passion and desperation just to know Him. Because even if He never does another thing for me, He has done everything for me. Because He is so incredibly worthy to be known and sought after. Because I am realizing the necessity of cultivating a friendship with my Best Friend, a romance with the Lover of my soul, and a soul-captivating relationship with my Savior.

And as I spent time with Him, I still heard the word soon. Soon I would graduate. Soon I would begin my career to invest in the lives of the next generation(s). Soon I would fall in love. Soon I would travel. Soon I would be in my own apartment. I didn’t (and still don’t know) what soon refers to. But I receive it because God is the God of here and now, past and present, and future and soon. I believe that the breath of God is blowing on my life. And when the breath of God moves, it might as well be hurricane force winds because things happen. The very fabric of reality shifts and once what was impossible is entirely possible.

Jesus said that He came to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor as Isaiah prophesied. In Luke 4, Jesus comes home and goes to church and reads from Isaiah to those gathered.

Isaiah 62 (1) The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, (2) to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, (3) and provide for those who grieve in Zion- to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.

Luke 4 (14) Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. (15) He was teaching in their synagogues,and everyone praised him. (16) He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, (17) and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

 (18) The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free, (19) to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

(20) Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. (21) He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

This is the year of the Lord’s favor.This is the year that promises will come to pass and new promises will be revealed. This is the year that dry bones will live (Ezekiel 37).This is the year of soon.

But tonight Holy Spirit revealed another word to me. That word is waiting. Now, the Lord cannot contradict Himself. His Word stands and cannot fail. So, while these two words may seem on opposite ends of the spectrum, they really aren’t so far apart.

You see, I am not waiting on my soon (or however many “soons” the Lord has for me). I am trusting for my soon, and I am praying for my soon, but I am not waiting for it. I am waiting on the Lord. I am waiting on His timing for my life. I am waiting on His will. I am waiting to hear His voice.

You might be wondering any of what I said matters or what it has to do with you. You see, the reason I am writing this is because it is a declaration of what the Lord has told me. Every word He says will come to pass; His word cannot fail.

Hebrews 4 (12) For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Ezekiel 12 (25) But I the Lord will speak what I will, and it shall be fulfilled without delay. For in your days, … I will fulfill whatever I say, declares the Sovereign Lord.

It is so vital that we learn to hear God and learn to prophesy what He says over our lives and the lives of those around us. We must verbalize the Word of God over our life.We must stand firm on the promises of God. We must believe that He will do what He says He will. Because when we believe, we receive. Because when we believe and speak the Word of God over our situations, things change. The fabric of reality shifts; our perspectives shift. The more time we spend in God’s Word, the more He reveals Himself to us and the more we hear from God.

So here’s to you, 2015! Here’s to the year of not waiting on the soon, but waiting on the Lord!