Seven Ideas I'm Taking Into 2024!

Seven Ideas I'm Taking Into 2024!
Photo by Nick Morrison / Unsplash

It’s day 1 of the year 2024.

It’s a year waiting to be created. And you create it to be how it is—good and bad.

As I plan and dream forward, I’m keeping a few things close to my chest.

After a year that brought a varying degree of pain, joy, empathy, and angst, I’m moving into 2024 a bit more prepared.

Here are seven unusual ideas to leave the ordinary behind and make 2024 extraordinary.

1) You’re not obligated to worry about things that are outside your control.

There are plenty of troubling things worthy of our attention.

There are too many things, in fact.

Terrible world events. Divisive political elections. Sad family events.

Do excellent things within your capabilities and abilities, and don’t allow the weight of the world’s trouble and pain to weigh your shoulders down.

  • Some people will never change, no matter how much you care.
  • Some things will not go according to plan, no matter what you do.
  • Sometimes, you will fail, no matter how hard you try.

Worry is not a requirement. In fact, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? - Matthew 6:25.

Worry less. Live more.

2) Every single person is weird, uncertain, and capable of evil.

We all have a quirk. It’s not a bad thing.

I like to think about God like a multi-faced diamond: if you were able to rotate Him in your hand, it would reveal various dimensions, colors, and patterns. It’s wildly vast and yet a singular item.

In their wildly weird and uncertain ways, human beings are the living expressions of God’s diamond faces. We are God's living, breathing image on a collective (and individual) level.

We are also all capable of doing a lot of bad in the world, from robbing banks to flipping off the guy who cut us off. We have full liberty to do good or bad.

  • This year, you can choose to embrace your weirdness (it’s how God made you).
  • This year, you can choose to let go of your uncertainties (there is nothing you can do about them anyway).
  • This year, you can choose to do more good than bad (because others depend on it).

3) Even the most painful moments can bring you something.

It takes courage to embrace hardship as an opportunity.

But within every challenge lies a chance to refine our resilience, unearth hidden strengths, and build a life richer than before.

No life worth living is easy.

  • Real love requires a vulnerable heart.
  • Real strength requires worn-out muscles.
  • Real faith requires moments of uncertainty.

4) Everyone suffers from some level of social anxiety.

Nobody wants to be rejected—not really.

We are community-designed, meaning God shaped us to be our best when we live with others. So, the idea of being rejected pulls at our life fibers.

And everyone is worried, at varying degrees, about what others think about them: what they think, how they act, what they stand for, and how they choose to live their life.

This is the great social paradox:

  • Even extroverts are shy.
  • Even introverts need others.

This year, nurture the habit of letting go of the concern of your social anxiety. Everyone is bumping through life, trying to figure it out.

5) You’re not the only person with secrets.

Just because someone appears wealthier, happier, privileged, or successful does not mean they are not carrying an invisible burden.

  • Comparison rarely moves you closer to your goals.
  • Whining won’t make it easier.
  • Playing victim won’t lead to triumph.

Celebrate other people’s wins and learn to celebrate where you currently are. There is nothing wrong with today if you choose to move forward tomorrow.

I am choosing to see the best in others this year.

6) You don’t have to do what everyone else is doing.

When the world buys the newest iPhone this year, you could decide to ditch the smartphone altogether.

When the world tunes in to every sporting event and newest Netflix hit, you could decide to fast from TV outright.

When the world begins yelling, fretting, and blaming one another over the presidential election, you can decide your vote and keep your aggressive opinions to yourself.

When the world tells you to spend, you could decide to save.

Christians are not afraid to swim against the current. This is obvious in our faith, but you can flex the muscle in the little decisions you make every day.

The majority is not always right.

“There are more foolish people than there are wise people. People who think deeply and critically are fewer compared to those with poor thinking.” - Omosohwofa Casey

7) What you accomplished before the end of December is not the only factor in determining 2024's success.

New-year resolutions are excellent motivators.

I set goals every year and measure myself on a quarterly basis to make sure the goals are working for me and not the other way around.

But a successful year for a Christian isn't just about checking boxes on a to-do list. It's about something deeper, something that builds a Kingdom, not just a resume.

  • Did you nurture someone's faith this year, even if it wasn't in a hugely public way?
  • Did you show up for a friend in need, even if it wasn't headline-worthy?
  • Did you learn a new way to love God and others, even if it felt messy and imperfect?

The size of your goals achieved, the number of miles you run, or the number of books you are able to track are not the only indicators of a year well lived.

It's about the quiet moments when you poured love into your lives, the times you faced your fears and chose faith, and the moments you saw God's fingerprints on your journey.

So this year, let's chase something bigger than accomplishments.

Let's chase impact, yes, but also connection, growth, and love.

Celebrate the small wins alongside the big ones.

Remember that even a year without fireworks can be overflowing with God's grace and purpose.