Minute 730: Patient Seagull

The young couple sat on the sunny deserted beach, enjoying the cool ocean breeze. Sima reached into the cooler, withdrew two crisp apples and handed one to her husband of a few months. They bit into the fruits and chewed slowly, savoring the tangy, cool juices.

“Thanks,” Nachum smiled. “This is like a party for my dry mouth.”

His words drew a big smile. “I hope we’ll anticipate each other’s needs and appreciate one another for many years to come, im yirtzeh Hashem.”

They lapsed into a contented silence and let their eyes take in the beauty of the day.

“Look at that seagull,” Nachum pointed with his chin. “He’s staring at me! I think he likes me.”

“I think he wants your apple,” his kallah said.

The bird didn’t move as the young man slowly continued to eat. When the apple was just about finished, the gull raised its head skyward and squawked. Nachum tossed the core in the direction of the perseverant bird. Moving quickly towards the remains of the fruit, the seagull caught the core in its bill before it hit the sand and immediately started pecking at its prize.

“I guess his patience paid off,” Nachum said.

Today’s world is populated by billions of humans who demand instant gratification. What started simply with frozen dinners for those who didn’t have time to cook and instant coffee for those who wanted to jump-start their day has become a lifestyle in which even overnight delivery is deemed too slow. Sometimes it’s possible to take shortcuts and opt for speed, but when it is not, those who are patient will get their desire. The others will impatiently leave — empty handed or empty billed.

One More Second: Another Thought for the Day

Hashem is a lofty King who suffers insult beyond imagination. Without a doubt, nothing is hidden from His supervision. Also, there isn’t a moment when a human is not sustained through His abundant generosity. Even though the human sins with the gifts bestowed by Hashem, He does not deprive the sinner of these powers. Instead, He suffers the embarrassment by continuing to supply the needs of the person who is angering Him. (Rabbi Moshe Cordevero, Tomer Devorah, chap. 1)


Rabbi Raymond Beyda serves in the Sephardic Community in Brooklyn, N.Y. He is author of the book 1 Minute With Yourself: A Minute a Day to Self-Improvement, Sephardic Press, 2008.