Our friend Logan is a college student in New Jersey.
Hello Reb Lazer,
I wanted to tell you something that happened to me a couple weeks ago. I go to a secular college in New Jersey and there is very little Jewish presence on campus. I am the only one I've ever seen on campus with a kippa and tzitzit. In short, I stick out like a sore thumb. This has never resulted in any altercations or conflicts (B'Chasdei Hashem!) which initially was a concern considering how many people identifying as Palestinian are present on campus. In fact, it's kept me quite conscientious of how a Jew should act in public for fear of potentially creating a defamation of Hashem's Name.
In any case, as I was leaving my final exam a couple weeks ago, a non-Jewish man in my class walked over to me and said something very moving. He called me aside and said:
"You know. It's really great to have a Jew in my class. I don't know what the problem with the rest of the world is with Jews. I was somewhere where there was a lot of conflict between non-Jews and Jews once and I told them, 'Why are you hating on the Jews? Don't you know that we're blessed through them?' I'm a Christian but I know that Judiasm is the true source of everything. People need to realize that."
I thanked him and said that I wish more people could have such positive feelings about Jews. Reb Lazer, this man came to me unsolicited to remind me of a special mission I have in the world as a Jew: to be a conduit of Hashem's loving grace on the world. While the Yetzer was trying to viciously attacking my mind with worry about final exams here was a messenger of Hashem encouraging me in such an unlikely place.
Just thought you might like that story. Warmly, Logan Singman, W. Orange, NJ