I’m not the greatest friend in the world.

I’m too independent, too stubborn and too set in my ways.

But I want to change. I want to be a better friend. I want to honor God in the way I treat others.

So I’ve put together these 10 resolutions that I’m making to help me be a better friend:

#1 Resolved to forget quickly

No more keeping records of every word said and every birthday forgotten. When it comes to my friends, I’m letting go of the things that don’t matter as much.

#2 Resolved to forgive often

Here’s what I know: I’m going to hurt my friends both intentionally and unintentionally, and I’m going to long to be forgiven. To that end, I want to give my friends the same grace I expect them to give me.

#3 Resolved to listen slower

I tend to be too rushed for deep friendships. This one will take every ounce of resolve. To stop and listen both to words spoken and words left unsaid.

#4 Resolved to say less

And I tend to want to fix everything with a formula or a lecture. I’m resolving to talk less starting now.

#5 Resolved to pray more

If tempted to talk as I know I will be, I’m going to use my words to pray for my friends: that their dreams will come true and their hopes be fulfilled, and other stuff too, things that only friends know.

#6 Resolved to initiate first

The truth is that I don’t have that many friends, and it’s probably because I wait for others to make the first move. Today I resolve to step out into the unknown first: to reach out first, to invite first, to ask for forgiveness again, first.

#7 Resolved to be kinder

It doesn’t take a lot to build a lasting friendship when you think about it, but you can never build a friendship without this basic building block that’s too often forgotten: be kind. I resolve to be kind.

#8 Resolved to stay longer

I build walls that are too high and run faster and further than I should especially when I’m hurt. Today I resolve to stay longer than expected when it’s more natural for me to hide.

#9 Resolve to go deeper

Yeah, it will take more time, and yeah, it will sometimes feel weird and maybe a little unsafe, but it will be worth it. I know it will be worth it with time.

#10 Resolved to try harder

I will fail over and over again. I know I will. I am sure I will. But I resolve that when it comes to the handful of friendships in my life, that I will try over and over again and get better and better each time.

So if you’re my friend and you’re reading this, hang in there with me. I’m a work in progress, that’s true. But God’s not finished with me yet.

And I hope neither are you.