You can't force the heart. Genuine compassion cannot be imposed from without. It doesn't happen simply by hearing a sermon on love, or being sent on a loving mission. How often have we set out to love the world — or even more difficult, to love some tiresome, undeserving, mule-headed person on our street — and given up, feeling exasperated, unappreciated, used, tired, burned out, or just plain cynical? The point is, you don't arbitrarily make up your mind to be compassionate so much as you choose to follow a journey that transforms your heart into a compassionate space.

Sue Monk Kidd, Firstlight