It is a scary thought to be compassionate because it requires us to give up our competitive nature. Our identities are made up of our reputation and what makes us different than everyone else. We are the difference we make in the world.
When we strip ourselves of our competitive nature to stick out from the rest of mankind, we can truly live a lifestyle of compassion towards others.
Doing this goes against our nature- but it is what God does. He is full of compassion towards us. It is based on His love to us. But He doesn't just let things fly. Like with sin, He is compassionate on us by giving us a second chance BUT He also requires we actively change our lives around. Making a continuous effort every single day to live right. His compassion isn't based on our actions, but it is a very central aspect of Christianity to want to be like God. Scripture repeats that we are made in His image and sin divided us from that image so we live our lives redeeming it.
However, redeeming that image has to come from a place within ourselves that isn't selfish or competitive! It has to come from a place that is compassionate.