Everyone needs a hero. If you read the free preview of my book, you know that one of the biggest influences on my medical career has been Dr. Nick Yphantides. If you don’t want to read the whole thing, here’s an excerpt:
After I accepted Christ… I went happily on my way to college at UCLA, majored in physiological science like a good little pre-med, and researched and volunteered my way into medical school. In medical school, I just looked for Christian things that I should do. So, I started volunteering at the free clinics, as well as going down to Mexico on weekend mission trips. I was a medical student who happened to be a Christian.
Then I met Dr. Nick Yphantides, a mentor who would change the trajectory of my medical career. Growing up, my heroes were Jackie Chan and my dad, and I quickly added Dr. Nick to that list. He was one of those superstar students who made medical school look like child’s play. He graduated high school and college early, and rumor has it he got top marks in every class and rotation in medical school.
This was a guy who could have done anything he wanted. But he was also a devoted Christian who loved the Lord, and was convicted by God to serve the indigent poor of San Diego. Because of that, he chose to go into primary care and spent the first decade of his career on the front lines serving exclusively patients without insurance.
In Dr. Nick I found a Christian who happened to be a doctor. He understood that God’s heart beats for the poor, oppressed, and marginalized. For Dr. Nick, medicine was simply a means in which to carry out that heart. As I spent time with him and saw that passion lived out, God began to put a similar conviction on my heart as well.
Worth the Cost, Introduction: My Story
If you are pursuing any career, not just medicine, an important thing you need to do is to find someone who has gone before that can mentor you. And especially if you want to do it for the Lord, you need to find someone who is living that out. Things can get really hard, and we need the experience of those who have gone before to follow after and a glimpse of faith lived out.
If you want to be inspired, here’s a cool video that shows a snapshot of Dr. Nick’s life.
Who in your life can you ask to mentor you in what you would like to do? Who in your life can you be a mentor for?