It is easy looking at the lives of others and being encouraged to follow their path. It is one of the main reasons the Church includes the lives of the Saints in the daily calendar. Their lives inspire us to be better today than we were yesterday. Have you ever considered what it would mean to experience mutual encouragement?
Brethren, grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world. For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God's will I may now at last succeed in coming to you. For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you, that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith, both yours and mine. – Romans 1.7-12
Saint Paul was among the greatest evangelists and saints of the Church. He traveled throughout his world and spread the Good News that God had come to save His people, and that WE were His people if we believe. Although he started his life against the Church, he became such a great advocate for the Gospel of Jesus Christ that, not only was he revered by the people, he was hated by those who hated Jesus.
The dedication and faith of Saint Paul was an encouragement to everyone he met, and STILL he found a way to be encouraged by the faith and dedication of those whom he met in his ministry. To be mutually encouraged requires two things: faith and humility. We must have a strong faith in order for our lives to be an encouragement to others, but we must have humility to be encouraged by others. Saint Paul was an example of both.
Have the courage of Saint Paul to live a life that would be an encouragement to others. Have the humility of Saint Paul to be encouraged by the faith of others. If you really want to ‘go all out’ have both, because what really is an encouragement to others is for others to see your willingness to see the faith and humility in others, not just yourself. It is a cycle of faith that lasts generations.