Minute #625: As If It Were

Yeshayah was running late. Being tardy for this appointment could make a big difference in his career path and financial future. In his haste, he forgot his bank card and had to wait on line at the bank to use a teller rather than the ATM. Two of the three people in front of him on the line completed their transactions relatively quickly. Yeshayah believed he was going to make up for lost time, but that dream didn’t last too long.

The woman in front of him approached the teller and nervously fumbled in an oversized tote looking for an envelope that contained a notice from the bank. Yeshayah tried to be patient, but, to add to his pressure, the polite teller had trouble explaining the reason for the letter and what the woman had to do to comply with the notice. He started to tap his foot nervously. He couldn’t understand why the woman didn’t comprehend the explanation.

“Just my bad fortune,” he thought to himself. “Of all the people in town I end up on line behind someone who doesn’t know what she’s doing.”

He checked the time on his cell phone and was about to explode when the woman turned to him, embarrassed, and said, “I’m so sorry. I live alone and have no one who can explain these things to me. If my husband were still alive he would handle this. He was so smart. I really miss him.”

Yeshayah looked at her and said to himself, “What if this woman were my mother or grandmother? How would I want a stranger to treat her?”

“Don’t worry,” he said pleasantly. “I’m not in a hurry. Take your time.”

When someone is blocking you from getting where you want to go, act as if this person were someone dear to you. Make it personal and your patience will be boundless.

One More Second: Another Thought for the Day

When a person envies another person’s beauty, physical strength or wealth, he is manifesting a lack of acceptance of what the Alm-ghty decreed he should have. One who recognizes the Alm-ghty is just and fair does not envy any other person. (Reisheet Chochmah, “Shaar Ha’anavah,” chap. 7)