“Encouraged…by…mutual faith.” Ro 1:12 NKJV
Paul talks about three things we owe each other. Let’s look at them: (1) “Without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers” (v. 9 NKJV). An unknown poet wrote, “I was a poor soul in the depth of despair, who climbed to the heights in answer to prayer.” You can show no greater love and concern for someone than to say, “I’m praying for you,” and do it! Prayer invites God into the situation and authorizes the forces of heaven to go to work and bring change. (2) “I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift, so that you may be established” (v. 11 NKJV). What did Paul long for? The chance to strengthen his fellow believers, and he was willing to travel a long way at great personal risk to do it. When two people decide to recognize and nurture the God-given gifts in each other, not only are they blessed personally, everybody around them benefits too. (3) “That I may be encouraged together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me.” Notice the words “encouraged” and “mutual faith.” There are powerful dynamics at work here! First, we pray for one another. Second, we recognize and nurture God’s gifts in one another. Third, we unite our faith and focus on a shared goal. Jesus said: “If two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them” (Mt 18:19-20 NKJV).
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