Out with the Old, in with the New

David CerulloBy David Cerullo7 Minutes

In Jesus’ very first sermon after beginning His ministry, He quoted this beautiful passage in Isaiah 61:1-2:

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, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor (Luke 4:18-19).

Right from the beginning, Jesus wanted people to understand His heart to give them His amazing favor. This was a message of good news…physical and emotional healing…and liberty for those who were oppressed by the devil in some area of their life.

Notice that this is not just a momentary breakthrough, as wonderful as that might be. Jesus was proclaiming something quite amazing …

You can enter into an entire “YEAR of the Lord’s favor.”

As we head into 2016, that is my prayer for you, my friend. And I want to share a few keys for what you can DO to unlock more of God’s favor and blessings in your life.

1. Proclaim it.

According to Jesus’ words here, there’s a vital step you need to take in order to make this a special year for you:

You must “PROCLAIM” the year of God’s favor!

This is a very practical thing, for the Bible says “the tongue has the power of life and death” (Proverbs 18:21). Your words have a major impact in shaping your future.

But what if you’re facing a “winter season” of some kind, such as a job loss, an illness, the loss of a loved one, a financial setback, or struggles with your children? If so, you don’t have to be a passive victim. Speak boldly to your circumstances, declaring God’s promises for your victory. Tell your difficult circumstances that 2016 will be a wonderful year of God’s blessings and breakthroughs!

2. Go beyond superficial “resolutions.”

This time of year it seems like everyone is making a New Year’s resolution of some kind. Losing weight…getting out of debt…rekindling romance in their marriage…spending more time with the Lord or their children—there are many different areas of life where people are seeking a fresh start.

Although I’m certainly not against New Year’s resolutions, I believe God wants to give you something much greater than just a bunch of superficial, short-term resolutions:

God can give you a New Year’s revolution!

Instead of just changing a few troublesome symptoms, I’m convinced the Lord can transform every area of your life this year—dealing with root causes that have hindered you for years.

What difficult situations do you need God to turn around today? Has the enemy stolen something precious from you, whether it be your health, a close relationship, your finances, or simply your peace and joy?

Let’s pray BIG, audacious prayers this year, claiming God’s promises like this one in Jeremiah 30:3 from The Message:

“The time is coming when I will turn EVERYTHING around for My people!”

Isn’t that fantastic? When you draw near to the Lord and follow His instructions, He can “make ALL things new” in your life (Revelation 21:5, 2 Corinthians 5:17).

3. Seek God’s wisdom.

I meet many people who are frustrated that something seems missing in their Christian life. Perhaps they attend church, pay their tithes, and even Sow additional financial Seeds to reach the world with the Gospel. But although they’ve heard God’s promises about health, prosperity, and an abundant life, for some reason they aren’t seeing those promises activated in their life.

What could be the missing ingredients in the lives of these well-meaning Believers? Often I’ve found that people simply aren’t walking in God’s wisdom. You see, when you open your heart to God’s wisdom, everything else in your life is impacted. Not only will He reenergize your spiritual life, but there will also be a transformation of your health, finances, and relationships. In fact, His wisdom can change EVERY area of your life, as King Solomon describes in Proverbs 4:5-9:

Get wisdom, get understanding;
do not forget my words or turn away from them.
Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you;
love her, and she will watch over you.
The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom.
Though it cost all you have, get understanding.
Cherish her, and she will exalt you;
embrace her, and she will honor you.
She will give you a garland to grace your head
and present you with a glorious crown.

God’s wisdom and His favor go together hand in hand. And if you sense a need for more of His wisdom and favor in your life this year, all you have to do is ASK:

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you (James 1:5).

Take a few minutes right now to pause and ask the Lord to fill you with His wisdom this year as you spend time reading His Word and coming into His presence. His wisdom will change your life!

I am praying for you, dear friend. We believe great things are ahead for you and for this ministry we share together.

Remember: God IS faithful. And as you put these three keys into practice, I’m convinced your turnaround is just around the corner—bringing more joy and victory this year than you’ve ever known before.

Your Partner to Reach the Lost,

David Cerullo