It seems that there are at least three books bearing the title The Joy of Missing Out. One is subtitled Live More by Doing Less; another, Finding Balance in a Wired World; yet another is subtitled, The Art of Self Restraint in an age of Excess. I wish that I had time to read all three, but I guess attempting to do so would contradict the thesis of the books.
I am glad to hear that some folks are waking up to the danger of doing too much. None of us can do everything. Few of us will learn to excel at more than a few tasks. Keeping life simple would likely be better for all of us. But the key question remains: “What should be eliminated?”
Several years ago, I studied with a young man who was not sure that he believed in God. He was unusual in that he kept an open mind and was willing to give the Bible a chance. He read it, and as he read the Bible the Bible also read him. He found that the Bible spoke clearly to his inner thoughts, fears, and failures. A short time later something happened that convinced him absolutely that there is indeed a God.
But this young man never comes for Bible study anymore. He never attends worship. He explained to me that there is not time for everything in life. He and his wife decided that they wanted to devote their Sundays to playing with the children. In answer to the question “What should be eliminated?” He chose to eliminate the worship of God.
We cannot give our kids everything. We cannot enjoy everything ourselves. We must make choices. It is good to have a hobby. It is not good to have twelve.
There are a few things that should not be eliminated. Meals, for both the body and soul, are served every day at our house; and it is going to stay that way. I may miss out on a lot of things in life, in fact I intend to do so. I will miss out on many things because that is the only way to find joy in the things that really matter.
Everyone misses out on something. Those who try to do everything end up missing the most important. What are you missing?
–Thayer Salisbury (former Minister of Flanners Rd. Church of Christ in Toledo, Ohio, now serving as a missionary in Africa))