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Never Forget your Poor Relatives
Dr Khalid Zaheer


A young, poor friend of mine came to see me from a place some seventy kilometers from Lahore. He did inform me on the phone that morning about his arrival. Incidentally, I had a particularly busy schedule to pursue that day. Plus, I must admit, I was not extremely enthusiastic about the prospect of his visit anyway. I therefore asked him not to come. Probably he had dropped the phone line before I could complete my statement. He arrived later in the day. I avoided meeting him. However, he finally made it into my office despite my best efforts. I didnt greet him politely, although I did inquire about his welfare and that of his family. He informed me that the ‘khoka’ (kiosk) business that he had started recently was doing reasonably well. He asked me to help him out financially to enable him to install a simple water-pulling motor to ease the water crisis his family was facing. He said that he also needed money to get a simple arrangement of toilet installed within his home to make things easier for his aging mother. The total amount he requested to get both jobs done was rupees six thousand. I had the amount with me but I refused to oblige him, since, I thought, I didn’t like the way he came all the way to Lahore without getting my prior permission. He, therefore, had to go back, unsuccessful in his mission. I did realize later that what I had done to him was very inappropriate. The way I behaved with him was completely against the spirit of Islamic teachings. I did make some attempt to seek forgiveness from God Almighty.

Two days later, when I was coming back from downtown, a car made an attempt to overtake mine from the wrong side. It was an old, huge machine and the driver, it seems, was unaware of the large size of the ship he was navigating. The result was that during the overtaking mission, he didn’t allow enough space to his car to go past mine and consequently, on overtaking, some part of the front portion of my car’s body could be seen hanging on the back of that ‘sixty year old monster’. It all happened so swiftly that I could neither follow the car nor was I able to read its registration number. On my return home, I immediately contacted my mechanic who advised me to get the car repaired as soon as possible. The job was done within twenty four hours. When I asked for the bill, his response was shocking: It was exactly rupees six thousand. I felt as if God Almighty was right in front of me, telling me this: ‘Do you think I Myself couldn’t have helped My servant who came to you from a far off place, asking for that amount? I have enough resources at my disposal to take care of all My creation. I just wanted to provide you with the opportunity to help My servant out in his trouble with the resources I had Myself provided you with. It wasnt he who came to you; it was, in fact, I, your God, Who came to ask for help. And you rejected My request. That’s why I deprived you of the exact amount you refused to give to my servant. Don’t ever try to imagine in future that what you have belongs to you. It’s all My blessings. Avail them within decent limits. But don’t forget to share them with your fellow human beings who I have given less just to test their and your faith in Me.’ I was really embarrassed. It’s amazing how God Almighty is able to control every part of His creation in such a subtle way that while on the one hand we are under the impression that we are taking our own decisions, but the truth of the matter is that God Almighty, despite our independent decision making, is completely in charge, doing whatever He wants to:

And Allah has full power and control over His affairs; but most among mankind know it not. (12:21) 

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