Do you desire to walk in true freedom in the New Year? You can live in victory and peace as we walk in the year of the Lord’s favor. The prophet Isaiah powerfully foretold of the Messiah who would come and proclaim the “year of the Lord’s favor”. A time would come when the Chosen One would set captives free, and would comfort the brokenhearted. This Anointed One was Jesus, the Lamb of God who came to take away the sins of the world (John 1:29).
This year has been quite a challenging one–and it certainly is a relief to know that Jesus, our Immanuel, came to set us free from the bondage of sin. Now we can truly walk in the freedom Jesus died to give us!
What is the Year of the Lord’s Favor?
Imagine being greeted by the flashing gleam of a glorious light. The angel Gabriel gave Mary the surprise of her life when the celestial wonder paid her a visit. “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you” (Luke 1:28).
The angel proceeded to inform Mary that she would usher in the Savior of the world for all of humanity. Can you imagine the sheer fear and excitement she must have felt? That following year, as Mary carried her Savior, the one who was deemed highly favored by God brought forth the One who would usher in the foretold year of the Lord’s favor.
Years later in Luke 4:18, Jesus stood before a crowd in the synagogue and proclaimed the words of the prophet Isaiah:
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,Isaiah 61:1-2
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,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Here is a printable of the entire chapter of Isaiah 61 that you can download and print off.
This scripture was fulfilled the day Jesus came as a tiny baby from Mary’s womb–Immanuel, God with us.
Now because of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, we, like Mary, are endowed with God’s grace and favor. The word favor throughout scripture is defined as acceptance, delight, grace, honor and blessings (source). We can praise our heavenly Father for his amazing favor, and powerful anointing of the Holy Spirit in our lives.
God sent Jesus as a tiny infant to release us from the captivity of sin and darkness–and now we can confidently walk in his glorious light, entering our year of grace and incredible favor. As we enter a new year, we can confidently trust that God’s favor will meet us at the start of each new day.
This was a difficult year on so many levels. Some of us have lost loved ones. Some lost homes in devastating hurricanes or ravaging forest fires. Some of us have lost jobs, or may still be waiting on a prodigal child to come home.
But no matter what difficulties we may face in the future, one truth remains certain:
The favor of the Lord is upon us.
Despite the storms that may rage around us, the grace and favor of our mighty God will surround us like a shield. Just as the prophet Isaiah proclaimed hundreds of years before Jesus lay in a manger, this is our year of favor.
Instead of a year of grief and ashes, God has given us a crown of beauty. Instead of a year of bitter mourning, we are anointed with the oil of gladness. Instead of a spirit of desperate despair, we are adorned with sparkling garments of praise.
As we plan and prepare for a new year–a year that will certainly have unforeseen challenges, let us remember that the favor of God is with us, and we can enter this new year with grace and freedom!
Free Printable Planner Page
As we walk in a new year of freedom and victory, feel free to download a free printable planner page that you can print and use to plan each day!