We can never be free to be ourselves if our personal relationships are warped and broken by resentment, rejection, and unforgiveness. The key to successful living, therefore, is being forgiven. If we don't receive forgiveness for our transgressions, we remain guilty. "Whenever we stand praying, forgive if we have anything against anyone, so that our Father who is in heaven may forgive us our transgressions" (Mark 11:25).
If we react with understanding and forgiveness, we see the power of God enter in and attitudes change. Then the situation changes and Godly character prevails. If we want God to be active in our lives, we must take down the wall of resentment and break free to be ourselves.
The Bible says, "Be ye kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you" (Eph. 4:32). When we experience the reality of God's forgiveness, knowing that through the death of Jesus we find ourselves truly forgiven before God, then we can offer forgiveness to others on a consistent basis.
Forgiveness is something that is required of us by a loving God who knows that we cannot be the person He created us to be unless we are willing and even anxious to forgive. We must have a forgiving attitude and a desire to love people by forgiving them. Jesus said that the greatest of all the commandments is to love God and the second greatest is to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. Giving and receiving forgiveness is the key that sets us free to fulfill these commandments and to begin to receive more and more of God's love.
As we receive more of God's love, we receive more of His strength and that makes it possible to return His love. This exchange of love is a personal, loving relationship with the One who created us for that purpose. We can have fellowship with Him if we are willing to love