I hope you had a wonderful Christmas time and some time to relax. Today marks the turn of the year, and as we’re currently exploring Madeira with the kids and raiding the Cristiano Ronaldo Museum. One question occupies my mind since a couple of days:

Why will 2024 be the best year ever?

The answer is straightforward: Yes. I firmly believe that 2024 will be the best year ever. Can faith truly move mountains? This question was answered for me a few weeks ago in a church service with the words, “If you have faith like a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” So, if you believe that 2024 might be the best year ever, it will happen. Your energy and focus determine your actions. If you seek the beautiful things in life, you will find them. However, if you focus on the shortcomings and other negative aspects, you’ll find plenty of those too.

Let it be done to you according to your faith

Sometimes wisdom is right in front of you but not immediately recognizable. In that particular church service, the word also revolved around the Gospel of Matthew. Yes, even if it might bore you – the Bible contains very clever things. Unfortunately, they are often overlooked or, in my opinion, wrongly interpreted.

Check out Matthew 9:27-30:

“And as Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed him, crying aloud, ‘Have mercy on us, Son of David.’ When he entered the house, the blind men came to him, and Jesus said to them, ‘Do you believe that I am able to do this?’ They said to him, ‘Yes, Lord.’ Then he touched their eyes, saying, ‘According to your faith be it done to you.’ And their eyes were opened.”

It’s not just about Jesus restoring sight to two blind men. The crucial part is often overlooked. He first asked them if they believed he could heal them. After they answered yes, he touched them, and they could see again. Was the power in Jesus’ hands or in the faith of the two men?

If my idea is correct, we should start the story a bit earlier. How did the faith in the two men come about?

The prelude to the Christmas story

Mary, famously the mother of Jesus, became pregnant. However, it wasn’t her husband Joseph at work, but the Holy Spirit – essentially no one physical. Let’s assume for a moment that it was true. Frankly, apart from Mary, I assume no one else believed it. Only she was sure that it was true. The angel who appeared to her told her that she would give birth to the Son of God. Did she believe it? Absolutely. How did she raise this little child? With the firm belief that he is the Son of God, endowed with all the abilities of the heavenly Father. A miracle worker and such. Jesus believed it because his mother believed it. And so, he travelled the land until the people believed it too. Whether the entire story is true or not, the belief in it worked wonders.

What I want to convey with all these biblical references is that belief in something or, primarily, in yourself is the decisive factor in whether your life, and thus the year 2024, will be the best ever.

Gene Simmons’ mother

As you know, a few weeks ago, Anke and I were in the studio in New York with Gene Simmons of KISS. In his biography, I read that his mother repeatedly told him in childhood, “You are a gift from God that he has given to the world.” And what did Gene, as an only child, do? He believed it. This man has such immense self-confidence and self-assurance that it’s almost otherworldly. Where did he get it? He adopted the belief of his mother and simply follows that belief in everything he does.

So, if you are a mother, a father, a neighbor, an uncle, a teacher, or a person who occasionally interacts with children: What if you started giving uplifting words to children and other people from now on, instead of saying things like “take an example from your brother” or “were you worse than the class average again” or “you’ll never learn”? What if you addressed unpleasant behavior instead of belittling the person behind the behavior? Because people will believe it and apply it to themselves, rather than their actions. And this belief then determines the focus for the rest of their lives. 

“What you did to one of my least brothers, you did to me.” – Jesus 

Everything is interconnected, and thus the energy you bring positively or negatively to other people comes back directly to you.

In this spirit: Bring joy, laughter, and optimism in the new year. First to yourself and then to all the other people you encounter. And do it with full love and an open heart. Then 2024 can only be the best year ever.

Happy New Year!