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Spam or great message?

Friday, 13 December, 2013 - 1:05 pm

We all often get very 'catchy' spam email; occasionally, we get emails that are questionable. I got one of these two weeks ago, and it turns out that it was very legitimate:

A message that came from an email that I didn't recognize and with no subject line, said the following: 

"I was thinking of you after my final cancer surgery. I am fine. Thanks for being there for Joe. You are the only Jew he admires. Thanks again".

I didn't remember any Joe that I was very close to, nor any Joe whose father had a surgery. But it does say, "Jew", which seemed to be more than random spam. I decided that it must have been sent to the wrong person. Perhaps, he meant to send it  to a different Rabbi… So, I replied  asking "to whom did you intent to send this email to?".

The moment I got the email back from the man, I realized who it was. Joe was a student at Uvic that came by a few times to eat with us, appeared occasionally in Shul on Shabbat, and with whom I spent time together a few times. I never thought that I had any influence on him beyond spending the few times together...

Don't worry, I understand that he didn't really mean that I'm the only Jew he admires...  I do assume it really means that I had some impact on this boy's life in a challenging time for him. I had no clue...

This was a powerful lesson for me. The effect that we have on other people is beyond what we can ever imagine. A little gesture from you - may mean a world to another!



Comments on: Spam or great message?

Don Morris wrote...

Dear Rabbi Meir,
Your presence, Baruch Hashem, is a significant, positive
presence and we are both fortunate and blessed to have you and your family here in Victoria!

Sheila wrote...

Amen to that ... I couldn't have said it better!

Inna Smolov wrote...

Anyone who meets you, Rabbi, has a great respect for you. It seems that you have impressed A LOT of people.
May you and Chani go from strength to strength.

Marvin Sharpe wrote...

That this young man "admires you" Rabbi is a tribute. But I cannot agree with you on the meaning of "the only Jew he admires". To me it represents the same as the oft heard remark "some of my best friends are Jewish". I know that I am a well known skeptic but I'm also a well known realist.