First of all, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed throughout the whole world.
[Rom 1:8 NET]
Paul was a model pastor.
To begin with, he was unalterably devoted to Christ. Then he loved people with a love that was wondrously like the love of Christ. Here he thanks God for the friends to whom he is writing, especially for their faith. Then he appeals to God to witness to the sincerity of his interest in them, which led him unceasingly to make mention of them in his prayers.
The prayer which at that time was in his heart was that he might be prospered in his desire to get them at Rome. He longed to see them. The reason he thus so wished to see them shows a most lofty spiritual motive.
His desire was purely unselfish – “that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift.” Here we have a high ideal for all friendship.
We should always want to do our friends good. Every time we meet them we should wish to do something for them – to give them some cheer, some comfort, to put a little new courage into their hearts.