Think about the people who have most influenced you. When I remember them I am always surprised to discover that these are people who did not try to influence me, who did not need my response. Instead they radiated a certain inner freedom. They made me aware that they were in touch with more than themselves. They pointed to a reality greater than themselves from which and in whom their freedom grew. This centeredness, this inner freedom, this spiritual independence had a mysterious contagiousness.
— Henri Nouwen, Turn My Mourning into Dancing, p. 75