We often hear about the value of having intentions, and how this is the key to attaining reward. However, let’s explore how having the right intention can unlock so much more.
“And they give food in spite of love for it to the needy, the orphan, and the captive, [Saying], We feed you only for the countenance of Allah. We wish not from you reward or gratitude.” (76:8-9)
But before we get into it, have a read of the Arabic and a listen too, because it’s so much more impactful that way:
So I’m not going to talk much about why you should feed the poor or help those in need, but I’m going to go on a quick tangent first.
Imagine you’ve just started a new job in telesales (just go with it), and you make your first ever sale and your supervisor praises you. So you go on, and get another and another, but then you hit a few hurdles, but you carry on and get the biggest sale of the day. Smashing it right? Indeed, your manager now comes over and declares you the best new starter, and you’re pumped for the next day. The rest of that week you continue to work harder and harder to be recognised, waiting time and time again for someone to come and acknowledge your work.
But this is a fast paced workplace and other new people come, the attention decreases, your praise lessens. But you continue to work hard, but no one acknowledges it, you become demotivated, lose interest in your work ethic and slowly that enjoyment in your work goes away.
Now let’s go back to the verses; they are not about call centres nor even call centres to raise money for feeding the poor. But if we look upon the people in the verse, they are doing an action purely for the sake of Allah, for His reward, and not seeking reward from people.
This is what I want to focus on, the awesomeness of doing good for the sake of Allah.
You’re working in a project (Charity Week, just in case that wasn’t clear) and you’re doing it for the sake of Allah, just like the people in the verse. This gives you the hope of knowing that you will be rewarded by Allah (instant gratification for you).
Secondly you work harder, and put more hours in, but you don’t hinge this on having to be noticed, you know Allah knows. There are times where you struggle, but you persevere through knowing Allah has got your back and in the hope of attaining his pleasure.