8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. 9 God, whom I serve in my spirit in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you 10 in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to you. 11 I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong— 12 that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith.
Paul is encouraging the Romans by his confession that he gives thanks to God for their reported faith and that it is being noticed all over the world.
This is a good idea for us leaders to encourage those whom we are over. Instead of only looking for ways to teach and correct, we could also encourage others by sharing how much we thank God for them and praise their efforts of faith. He said their faith was growing and honored them for that. There are some things later that Paul will instruct and even strongly accuse. But first is encouragement. Paul chose to encourage the most important part of anyone’s relationship with Christ. Our faith in Him.
In verse 12 Paul also stated they could encourage each other by their stories of faiths. Sharing our life and experiences with each other encourages our own faith in what God is doing in our lives.
Do I thank God first for those in my area of influence and tell them so?(verse 8)
Do I share how proud I am of the most important element in Godly living (faith) no matter that actual situations I could bring up?
Do I recognize I can be encouraged in my heart as I share my faith issues and listen to theirs?
Am I a encourager or a spotlight? Lord Help me to place a lightnside of my friends by giving thanks to you for them and encouraging them for their faith.