On the Side: June 2024

by Shelly Wyrick


“…let us lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us,
and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith,
who for the joy set before Him endured the cross…”

Hebrews 12:1-2


I jumped out of the car barely in time for my daughter’s softball game. She looked perfect with her hair back in a softball style and her gear slung over her shoulder – all set. Then I looked down and noticed I was wearing two different shoes. One hot pink, the other yellow. Both Birkenstocks, so that’s a win. Both are comfortable- also good. Yet ridiculous.

Then, yesterday, I finally took my two youngest out to Boba Tea during a few spare moments before my son’s baseball game. We whisked into the shop I drive by daily but hadn’t noticed, and my girls chose their flavors. I stepped up to order, mistakingly saying, “We’d like two Mango Boobas, please.” It’s a slight error of vowel sound. Just one little letter turns a boba into a booba. Ridiculous.

Sometimes, I just get a little distracted. My life phase right now involves a lot of drop-offs and pick-ups and some sort of dinner fashioned into a tortilla wrap for easy handling while spectating. We are busy, our lives full. In that busyness, I’m running the race with perseverance, but not necessarily with my eyes fixed on Jesus.

I love Side By Side for the diversity of women it unifies. You may not be in kid-sport mode. Perhaps you’re busy (and exhausted) because you’re awake nursing every few hours. Or you’re not busy at all. Your focus diversion presents differently. Does bitterness sidetrack you? Or finances? Or just being the wife of a doctor? We are unique. “You have to be tough and resourceful and be able to make it on your own a lot” (Sharon Chatwell). You may be feeling off-balanced from the grind of being tough, resourceful, and on your own. Whatever it is, chances are a few women in this group have been there.

Distractions grow like weeds in a garden. Mark chapter four tells us that the thorns of life are “worries of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things” (Mark 4:19).

Worries of the World
Give me a worldly topic, and I’ll worry. We don’t even need to look outside our homes to find it—worry abounds. It so easily ensnares us, dragging us down and away from our keep-looking-up posture. Fight back. Pray. Read yourself some Word. Listen to worship music. Praise is indeed a weapon!

Deceitfulness of Riches
Those still in training aren’t necessarily deceived by riches because there are no riches. The budget is: don’t spend anything. But still, our finances, or lack thereof, are a big deal. Do we look at what our peers are able to do with their money and subtly believe we are lacking? Fix your eyes upon Jesus. I pray you will know “what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe” (Ephesians 1:18).

Desire for Other Things
Sometimes, you have to put your husband before yourself. Duh. This reversal may be for a few moments while he answers a call. Or it’s the cost of a dinner, which you were going to have together but now you’re not because someone somewhere had a heart attack or something. We might need to put our own plans on hold, or divert them to accommodate a residency match or new job. If we do not have our eyes on Jesus, we can too easily fix our gaze on the fact that you do not always get to come first. Look up! The Author and Perfecter is orchestrating your incredible and beautiful path. Jesus sees you; He is right there with you. He loves you and will not fail you, not for a second.

Our family is into archery. Last summer I watched two of my daughters, 8 years apart, shoot together at a target. The eldest went straight for the bullseye. She’s a great shot. The other knocked the arrow to her bow, pulled back, and then lifted it to heaven before releasing it to watch it fly. The arrow shot up, made a perfect arc, and came back down with a thwunk in the dirt. It’s mesmerizing for her to shoot up and watch them fly. My point is: be intentional with your aim. It’s good to hit the bullseye, but remember to look up.  Run the race that is set before you with your eyes fixed on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross.

Shelly Wyrick is wife to her manly medical man and mom to 4 kids. She has been a physical therapist, stay-at-home mom, chauffeur, and mudroom laundromat attendant. She currently works as the artist and freelance writer behind 

Christian Medical & Dental Associations®

About Christian Medical & Dental Associations®

The Christian Medical & Dental Associations® (CMDA) is made up of the Christian Medical Association (CMA) and the Christian Dental Association (CDA). CMDA provides resources, networking opportunities, education and a public voice for Christian healthcare professionals and students. Founded in 1931, CMDA provides programs and services supporting its mission to "change hearts in healthcare" with a current membership of over 13,000 healthcare professionals. CMDA promotes positions and addresses policies on healthcare issues; conducts overseas medical education and evangelism projects; coordinates a network of Christian healthcare professionals for fellowship and professional growth; sponsors student ministries in medical dental, PA, and other healthcare training schools; distributes educational and inspirational resources; hosts marriage and family conferences; provides developing world missionary healthcare professionals with continuing education resources; and conducts academic exchange programs overseas. By being the "hands of Jesus" to needy people, CMDA seeks to fulfill His Great Commandment (Matthew 22:39; 25:36) and His Great Commission (Matthew 28:19). The Christian Medical & Dental Associations® is a 501(c)3 and is governed by a Board of Trustees and House of Delegates. Policies of CMDA are interpreted and applied by the Board of Trustees, which also establishes the guidelines for the executive director and his staff. An elected House of Delegates assists the board with recommendations on courses of action. The House of Delegates is composed of graduate, student, resident and missionary members who are elected for three-year terms by district and meets annually at the CMDA National Convention. Approximately 75 employees currently make up the staff of CMDA in the national office and U.S. field offices.

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