Nazneen Gulamhussein Mukhtar (Arusha, Tanzania)
Charity and a willingness to give is a character loved by Allah (swt).
‘And be steadfast in prayer and regular in charity. And whatever good ye send forth for your souls before you, ye shall find it with Allah: for Allah sees Well all that ye do.’(Qur’an 2:110)
Allah accepts charity, but there are some conditions:
Firstly the thing we give must be defectless! Sometimes when our clothes become very old or when something we own becomes useless, we feel like giving it to the poor. Allah wants us to give something good and useful to the poor.
Then secondly, the charity Allah loves is when we help others only for Allah’s sake not to show off or give unwillingly. That is why he says in the Holy Quran,
“A kind word with forgiveness is better than charity followed by injury.. . . O you who believe, make not your charity worthless by reproach and injury, like him who spends his wealth to be seen by people. . .”(2:263-264)
We don’t have to show others that we are giving something to the poor. Instead, we should try to give secretly and the reward is greater!
The best example we get of charity is in sure Dahr, where Allah talks about the charity of the Ahlulbeit (as), when he says,
“They give food, out of love for Him (Allah), to the poor, the orphan, and the slave, saying: We feed you only for Allah’s pleasure – we desire from you neither reward nor thanks.”(76:8,9)
Thirdly charity should be given to the ones who need it most. There are so many people who really need help. They don’t have enough food and water.
In the month of Mahe Ramadhan when we ourselves fast and stay hungry and thirsty, we realize exactly how the poor must be suffering. You see, to feel pity is not enough, but when we go through hunger and thirst we start feeling more and then we should give in the way of Allah with sincerity.
Statistics tell us that today, every 2 seconds a child dies due to starvation! 35000 children die every day because of poverty, half a billion survive on little food, 1 billion stays in poverty and 2 billion don’t have clean water to drink!
During this month when we have 1 meal a day, we can save and give to charity. Like there is a saying, “skip a lunch to feed a bunch!”
Fourthly charity should not be given only at the time of death when one does not need his money or property any more. Then the blessings he will receive from Allah will be lesser.
There was a person who gave a whole factory of dates at the time of his death in charity. As they were keeping the dates ready for distribution, one date fell down and the Holy Prophet picked it up and said, “ If this man had given even this single date with his own hands when he was alive, he would have been blessed more by Allah, then he will be blessed today for giving his whole factory in charity!”
Allah tells us in the Holy Qur’an: “Give to the poor and distribute from what We have provided you and render them needless, before the Day of Resurrection when you will be sorry for your hoarding of wealth and you will be faced with a severe chastisement.”
Allah does not like the misers. Misers are far from Allah’s mercy, they are far from Paradise, but the ones who give charity are closer to Allah and closer to Paradise.
When a person gives charity, the money that is given tends to give five messages to its owner, it says,
- I was bound to be wasted, but you have made me safe forever!
- I was your enemy as I could make you commit sins, but now I have become a friend
- Till now you were taking care of me! From now I will take care of you!
- I was not an important thing, now you have given me in the way of Allah and made me the most important
- Till now I was in your hands, now I am in Allah’s hands!
Charity is not only done by giving money but whatever good you have can be shared with others.
You can share your knowledge and your time for the sake of Allah, and you will be blessed.
A writer says, If you want joy learn to give Joy to others! If you want Love, learn to love others. If you want attention and appreciation from others, learn to give this to others.
So dear children let us give charity, especially during this Holy Month when we experience hunger and realize how hungry the poor are!
Let us save money and learn to give from our hearts and for the sake of Allah (swt).