You may have heard of FOMO. When I first saw this acronym, I had no idea what it meant. Urbandictionary.com defines it as “a state of mental or emotional strain caused by the fear of missing out;” also, “a form of social anxiety ̶ a compulsive concern that one might miss an opportunity or satisfying event, often aroused by posts seen on social media websites.”
I like to think I’m impervious to this phenomenon. For the most part I am, due to my increased awareness of minimalism and simplifying my life. Every once in a while I’m tempted to succumb to the voices telling me I need a new product or experience so my life will be meaningful and I won’t be the only one to miss out, but then I remind myself I am being pushed to “need” these things. Social media and advertisers do this to us all the time and it’s up to us to tune them out.
A better voice to tune into is that of the Holy Spirit, who tells us to be content with what we have: “Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met” (Matthew 6:33, The Message). Through Timothy, the Spirit tells us to pray for our leaders so we may live quiet, peaceful lives (1 Timothy 2:2). We don’t need to, and shouldn’t, fear missing out on anything this world has to offer. We have everything we need in Jesus.