Matters of Faith: What Has He Done For You Lately


By: Rev. J. Loren Russell, BA, MDiv.


Most people remember the 1986 Janet Jackson recording entitled, “What Have You Done For Me Lately?,” the song where Janet is talking to her girlfriend about the lack of attention she is getting from her boyfriend. It became very popular and a huge dance hit. Unlike the sadness of this song despite the upbeat tempo, the things that we have to be glad about when we reflect on the history of our lives, are much more rewarding and uplifting.

Joshua, the loyal servant to Moses, was chosen to lead the people of Israel into the Promised Land. This was an awesome time in their history, but also a very easy time for them to forget where they had come from and what they had gone through. They were at the land that was promised to their ancestor Abraham hundreds of years before. It was a god time in the lives of the Israelites. I have come to realize that during times of prosperity, it’s easy and sometimes advantageous to forget the past, where you’ve come from, and what you’ve come through. This current group of Israelites were not enslaved in Egypt, had not seen the parting of the Red Sea, had not experienced the rebellion of Korah, nor did they fight the battles that gave them access to the Promised Land. They were the children of those who had, yet they were poised to go into the land as recipients in times of prosperity.

Joshua, one of only two persons who was in Egypt and was blessed to live to not only see the Promised Land, but to enter, needed to refresh the memories of these blessed people by reminding them that they have been blessed not because of who they were or what they did, but simply because of a promise that was made to their ancestor hundreds of years ago. It’s seems that they may not have understood that it was that promise that the Lord has done a whole lot for them lately. Joshua reminded them that their present lifestyle was not due to their fortitude, commitment, dedication, hard work, good looks, or personality. The life they were living and the land they were about to enter was given to them;

 Joshua 24: 13

13 I gave you a land in which you had not worked hard; you took up residence in cities you did not build and you are eating the produce of vineyards and olive groves you did not plant.’


When we are reminded of the source, the magnitude, and the favor we have been given, how should we respond? We cannot believe that we deserve everything that we’ve been given and everything we have achieved solely based on our ability and our own strength. Joshua follows his reminder with instruction and guidance so that they wouldn’t forfeit their inheritance, and implies that they will receive even more blessings when they arrive in the Promised Land:  

Joshua 24:14

14 Now obey the Lord and worship him with integrity and loyalty. Put aside the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates and in Egypt and worship the Lord.

Whenever you think that the Lord hasn’t done anything for you lately, look back over your life and the lives of your ancestors. It may be that you are being blessed because of generations past, and are even now standing at the precipice of a land promised to them that He is fulfilling in your lifetime.

What has He done for you lately?   

Be Blessed +++


Have_Faith_InspireRev. J. Loren Russell, BS, MDiv is President/CEO of The JLR Company, and an associate minister at both Goodwill and Greater Universal Baptist Churches in the Bronx and hosts “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Soul 1 Radio (internet), Mondays 8:00 – 10:00 PM., or by phone at 626-226-1448.  

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