2024 is here.
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The start of a new year. What do you want out of it? Your answer to that question, and how you act on it, will affect the trajectory of your future more than anything else—more than the presidential election, the economy, your family of origin, or even winning the lottery.
In Mark 10, Jesus asks a blind man, Bartimaeus, that same question: “What do you want me to do for you?” I find that question stunning on a number of different levels. Jesus obviously wants to do something for Bart, but he wants the blind man to ask before he does it. Maybe Bart has bigger problems than his blindness? Maybe he had family issues that Jesus could have healed? Maybe he needed a job? The key thing was Jesus’ ask and Bart’s response.
Bart answers, “Let me recover my sight.” Jesus heals Bart’s eyes, but it wouldn’t have happened if Jesus didn’t ask him and if Bart didn’t respond. Jesus still asks people like you and me that same question: “What do you want me to do for you this year?”
Over the past several weeks, I’ve spent time with different groups of people hearing their answers to Jesus’ question. The younger people ask for career and money. The older people ask for things around pain and health. The middle aged people want life to be stable and safe. The only common thread across all ages is guilt about wanting more and asking Jesus for it. Some people feel it is downright selfish to have any personal desires—like the only good answer to Jesus’ question must be world peace and food for the hungry. Not true. Jesus asked Bart what he wanted and then gave it to him without judgment.
Was Bart’s request to see again selfish? If so, it didn’t phase Jesus at all. We have to risk sounding selfish if we want anything more for our lives. Yes it is ok, even expected, that you want more for yourself. As a father, I am comforted when I see my kids not settling for what they have and where they are. It is healthy to be hungry. It is unhealthy to be lazy and complacent. Your heavenly Father wants you to want.
In all the groups I’ve done this question with, I’ve taken notes on each person’s response. Next year, before I meet with the same people and ask them the same question, we are going to review how God has answered in the past year. My expectation is that we will be amazed by the number of “yes” answers we received. I also expect all of our faith and gratitude to grow as a result. That is what happens when we want, ask, and work.
So what is it you want Jesus to do for you in 2024? Be bold enough to ask Him for it. Then go and put in the work like His answer is already “yes.” It will change your year, your decade, and your life.
Every month, thousands of people get unfiltered encouragement and challenge from me delivered to their inboxes. If you enjoyed or were challenged by this, subscribe for more at the bottom of the page or at briantome.com. To quote the great John McClane… “Welcome to the party, pal.”Written by Brian Tome on