This anecdote from the life of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, is one of my favourites. This incident teaches us at least seven lessons:
One morning, Ali ibn Abi Taalib went outside Madinah in search of work so that he could feed his family. He came upon a lady looking for a labourer to carry water from a well to a clay pit. He agreed to carry the water for her in return for some dates. He did so and got about twenty dates. On the way home, he met the Prophet, peace be upon him, who asked what he was carrying. Ali said, “It is the dates that I earned for work I did. My hands are blistered from drawing water from the well with a palm-fiber rope”.
The Prophet, peace be upon him, rubbed Ali’s face and his hand and in obvious approval said:
“Allah has blessed this hand”.
And he continued:
“O Ali, give me a date. I will treat myself with it”. *
(* Taken from ‘Islam, the natural way’ by Abdul Wahid Hamid, MELS publication, pg 85)
Subhanallah! What an excellent teacher our Prophet was! Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him.
The kind words of the Prophet must have completely transformed Ali’s fatigueness into a moment of cherishable happiness!
1) In work, there is blessing.
2) Allah loves those who work.
3) Dignity lies in earning a livelihood.
4) No work must be looked upon with contempt.
5) Leaders must be motivators.
6) Motivation works wonders.
7) Begging is not allowed.