He begins by thanking God through Jesus Christ that their faith is spoken of throughout the whole world because his desire has always been to impart some spiritual gift to them in order that they be confirmed; steadfastly set, or strengthened in the faith: Rom.16: 25. Thus, their faith being spoken of throughout the whole world is proof positive that they are indeed strong in the faith, for it shows how strong in faith they are.
Our strength in the faith will always bring us into the limelight and will serve as an encouragement to others.
Notice in these verses, the apostle’s desire for them: that they may be strong in the faith and he backed this desire up with prayers. This is one of the true hallmarks of a leader. As Christian leaders, our desire should be the confirmation of our flock, that they be mature, strong in the faith and not be children tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine. And like Paul, this desire should be backed up by prayers and the preaching of the word for it is the word which strengthens believers.