Giving Sadaqah: Who Is The Fortunate One?
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Not too long ago I was leaving the mosque when somone asked for some sadaqah…
*A Muslim explains the Islamic take on charity. Re-posted with the author’s permission*
Not too long ago I was leaving the mosque when someone asked for some sadaqah; a common occurrence at some masajid. Sometimes I would give, sometimes I would not. If I did give, it would normally be whatever spare change I had in my pocket. This time I did decide to give, but when I opened my wallet I saw that I had no coins. There was only a single note. So I gave that instead.
When he saw it, his face really lit up with a huge smile. He thanked me profusely, smiling all the time while making dua for me. He also asked me my name: he said he was going to go inside the masjid and make dua for me. Subhanallah! Which of us then do you think was the beneficiary in this exchange? Who do you think gained more out of it? Imagine if his dua is accepted and Allah ta’ala grants me from the bounties of His treasures as a consequence of it. What a tremendous gain that would be! And what did it cost me? That note might seem like a lot at the time of giving, but what does it really amount to in the grand scheme of things? Nothing, really. Nothing at all. So he was not the fortunate one in this encounter of ours – it was me.
Usually when people beg from us we might give but we don’t really do it in a nice way and with a good intention (or maybe that’s just me ). We do it simply so that they’ll get off our backs and leave us alone. We do it so that they’ll stop bothering us and let us get on our way. It’s something we should try to change. Instead, we should try to give with sincerity and with compassion. One might argue that begging is not something condoned in Islam and that these people shouldn’t be encouraged. But we don’t know really what their circumstances are and what their condition is, that would drive them to such a deed. It could be that they are forced to it out of necessity. And we should remember that we aren’t really doing them a favour by giving. They are not the fortunate ones to be receiving our money; we are the fortunate ones in being afforded an opportunity to spend our wealth in a way which could cause Allah’s Pleasure to descend upon us.