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Renate Frech

dear all, dear Burgs,

I know we have moved to the third part, but I got ‘stuck’ in this part through life events and wanted to respond and to share. I am totally touched by the responses, reflections and also dilemmas raised.

I got ‘stuck’ and could not read or participate in any of the further conversations, because very suddenly a very close family friend of mine died after having had an accident – I know her since I was 5 years old, and her sudden death touched my most inner heart. I left the small village, I am currently living in Tanzania without even knowing how to travel from Africa to Austria, as I was told that if I want to go, I have to be ready in 15 minutes. but from the second I decided to go until the arrival three days later, I was protected and guided and all way long I only prayed and said thank you. I managed to get tickets, I somehow met strangers who were ‘generous’ with their smiles and support, etc. And also my friend was with me, I felt her spirit all way long and most of the quiet hours in the planes I communicated with her.
She was the most generous, loving and compassionate person and being in the church, feeling her presence and being grateful that I made it on time to be there at this physical farewell, I thought the following: what she left for all of the family, friends and community in which she was very active, was a spark in each heart, like a seed in each heart – a spark of light and love, of embracing and sharing – and it is up to us to live this, to develop, to nurture. And if we do so, we also keep her ‘alive’. I think in the meantime she transited, but I think I understood this last message of her.

I thought a lot also in my life about ‘how to give to make a difference’ and my cautious response is that the question might be ‘what difference do we want to make’? generosity of heart and mind can make a difference in the spirit and heart of the other, can motivate, can give him/her a light, a seed, a spark which might be more important than material generosity, as Burgs also told from his encounter. generosity of spending a meal, clothes, medicine, this also makes a difference, certainly for the moment. and if we want to make a difference in the life of the other than sometimes it requires commitment, as we need to understand the context, the personal story, the needs and the gaps. Somehow I deeply belief that if we are generous with our heart or better through our heart by trying to really see the other person, and if we try to walk in their shoes, we will not do harm, which is the important issue.
i just try to avoid the trap of sometimes rather giving money, as I do not have time and ‘do not want to be bothered further’ – then I tell myself it is not so much generosity but rather my bad conscience telling me to give, which is not good enough.

thanks for all and thanks to Burgs – this all makes so much difference!