Ramadan is a blessed month certainly, full of miracles and so many opportunities to do good. Yesterday, at exactly the time the Maghrib Adhaan sounded, our doorbell rang. Thinking it was someone who’d come to with a tray of Iftaari, I hurriedly opened the door. It was actually a labourer, who was working with another in the apartment next door, fixing it up for the owners to move in.
He passed me a plastic bottle. ‘Please give us some water in this – and two dates please.’
Now, before I tell you what happened next, I’ll narrate something that happened two hours before that episode. My sisters and I were watching Saudi TV and there was this really interesting programme on – “Eternalized Women.” The host was speaking about Ali (ra) and Fatima (ra)’s exemplary generosity and kindness. Once, this wonderful couple had sat down to open their fast in Ramadan when someone outside the door called out. It was a hungry man and they gave away all of their food to him. Instead, that evening, they opened their fast with bread and water. The next day, there was another call – this time, it was an orphan-child. They gave their food away generously, content with bread and water to break their fast. The third day, the same event occured and this time, a slave called out. Without a hint of impatience or selfishness, the charitable couple gave their food to him. Their own meal was bread and water again. The host of the TV programme said that the commentators of this narration say that the callers were actually different forms taken by the Angel Jibraeel (as), to test the patience and generosity of Ali (ra) and Fatima (ra).
It was a story which taught a lot of lessons. The labourer who rang our bell as we had sat down to Iftaar drew such an amazing parallel with the story of Ali (ra) and Fatima (ra) that we had heard only two hours ago – it was such a good feeling, MashAllah! First, we gave the labourer dates and water. Then, my father decided we could certainly do without the jug of juice too and my sisters hastened in giving away the mini-pizzas and chicken rolls. What fun we had and how amazing we felt, for having the opportunity to emulate the Prophet (pbuh)’s exemplary household, in whatever way we could! Ofcourse, Alhamdolillah, we didn’t have to break our fast with dates and water, yet… the feeling of pure joy… I wish we could get such opportunities more often!
Also, I’d love to share this Hadith about providing food for others to break their fast:
Zaid bin Khalid Juhani (ra) narrates that Allah’s Messenger (pbuh) stated, “Whoever provided food to a person who is fasting, to break the fast, his reward will be equivalent to that of the person who is fasting without any decrease in the reward of the latter.“
(Sahih Sunan Al Tirmidhi Lil Albani, Vol. 1, Hadith no. 647)
May your Ramadan be just as beautiful and enriching as it is for me!