“My own heart let me more have pity on.”
By Frederick Buechner
I certainly am always at war one way or another with myself, and some of them are wars I must fight to try to slay the demons, to kill the dragon, to lay the ghost to rest. But there are other wars you fight with yourself that are really not worth fighting at all. The war to make yourself be more, do more than you have it in you really to do or to be. I think of that wonderful line from one of the poems of my beloved Gerard Manley Hopkins where he says, “My own heart let me more have pity on.” My own heart let me more have pity on. That’s a lovely phrase. Be merciful to yourself, stop fighting yourself quite so much. Maybe what you are asking of yourself, what you’re driving yourself to do or to be, what you put a gun to your own back to make yourself do, is something at this point you needn’t have to think about doing.
• Frederick Buechner, The Remarkable Ordinary (p. 111)