Forgiveness is a learned skill, I think. It doesn't really come naturally, but happens more easily when practiced often.
Practicing forgiveness allows us to maintain relationships, yes, but it also allows us to keep our health. When we hang on to past grudges we keep our hearts and minds focused on negative thoughts which become negative actions. Our blood pressure increases, our hearts pound harder, our creativity declines...just not a healthy combination.
Holding on to our anger just makes us miserable people. No one desires to be in a relationship with miserable people...unless it's more miserable people. Ugh. That just sounds miserable! ;-)
And all this must put a strain on our relationship with God. Ask God for help to forgive, and hand over your anger to God. When we let go, our load is much lighter, and God's certainly big enough to take it!
Dear God, help me forgive others as well as myself. Take from me the anger that consumes me, and restore our relationship, and my relationship with others. Heal my heart and forgive me for holding on to those things which create enmity and pain and keeps me in a negative holding pattern. Change my heart, O God. Make me (more) like you.
I'm a wife, mom, pastor, human...probably not in that order. I struggle each day to be faithful to God, to my family and to my call as a Christian and all of those previously-mentioned roles. I pray to be positive, kind and thoughtful, but tend to fall short on all counts. I am inspired by sunrises and enjoy taking pictures (mostly my kids, deer in the yard and sunrises). I waste time playing stupid computer games and wishing I'd been better at all of the aforementioned roles. ;-)