It’s not even Labor Day Weekend and yet  I’ve already started getting articles, links, and posts like the 100 Things Everyone But You Did This Summer: 1. Laughing while tossing your hair back while sitting on soft white sand and your feet in the surf, 2. Making the most out of every precious moment with your child EVERY weekend, 3. Getting lots and lots and lots of home projects completed by noon while conversing with your besties about deep and meaningful social change while drinking Starbucks Coffee, 4. Sitting with your feet at the campfire while playing guitar and eating a s’more because it is “cheat day” upon completion of your hike to the summit… You get the gist.

If social media is to be believed, some people belong no matter where they are, they fit in no matter what they say or wear, and remain thin and sculpted eating nothing but ice cream and strolling slowly through Paris hand in hand with their true love of put XX number of years here. It is formulaic and sucking the souls from our bodies. We now live in a culture of “never enough.” You are not smart enough, rich enough, pretty enough, masculine enough, fast enough, strong enough, well-rounded enough, specialized enough, fill in the blank _______ enough. This is a mindset of scarcity that feeds FOMO or Fear of Missing Out.

Forbes magazine cited studies linking FOMO to feelings of disconnection and dissatisfaction fueled by social media and the constant drive to keep up with friends. Worse yet, some of us don’t just want to keep up but start evaluating our lives by comparing our real lives with what we see others portraying to us on our screens.

You might have FOMO if you check social media and email to smooth that anxious feeling that you might be missing an important email or status update. You might have FOMO if you want to participate in every decision or power meeting at work. You might have FOMO if you are the one managing the family gatherings, where it will be held, who is invited, what is on the menu, who sits where, and when and where the next one will be. You might have FOMO if you are regularly moving houses, jobs, spouses or never satisfied with your life/work choice.

The opposite of FOMO is not extravagance beyond all other people you may encounter. The opposite of FOMO is enough. Jesus says with Him living in you, you no longer have anything to fear. With God living in and through you, everything you need will be given to you. You are enough. You have enough. You will have enough. Enough worrying about enough! Jesus said, “It is enough for the disciple to be like the teacher…” (Matthew 10:25).

So what do you say? NOMO FOMO? We can proclaim with the early Christians, “Rejoice in the Lord always; the Lord is near. Do not worry about anything . . .” for we have learned to be content with whatever we have. “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7).

Dr. Mark Foster

Share This