It was a gloomy, overcast night. The wind was blowing and it was going to storm. Khadijah and her three young children were sitting on an old worn carpet in their room Khadijah looked out the window often, trying not to draw her children’s attention. She was worried that the storm would break before her husband arrived. Finally, hearing the key turn in the lock, she quickly got up, telling her children to go welcome their father.
“Oh mother”, said the youngest child, “Has he brought us food?” She gently scolded him, saying, “This is not important. Don’t ask him this question.” The children ran towards their father and, although she was upset, Khadijah, too, greeted him with a smile. Her husband had brought a few pieces of bread and cheese, which he handed to his wife. She soon served the simple meal on plates that had lost their colour through long use.
Khadijah spoke cheerfully while they ate and later the children slept, dreaming of sweets, toys and games. Their parents sat quietly for a while.
“So this year is about to end,” Khadijah’s husband, Hassan, said bitterly, “And I still haven’t found a job. We have spent our savings and sold what we could of our furniture. We have nothing left with which to fight our hunger.”
His wife replied, “We still have faith and determination, which are the keys to all which is good and brings happiness.”
“What good thing or happiness has our faith brought us? Our children are wearing torn clothes and are hungry. It is this very faith that has made life difficult for us, and it is guidance, which has led us to poverty! In the past we were living in luxury…”
Khadijah interrupted her husband, asking, “What kind of luxury was it? Since when has gambling been a way of providing for one’s family! Allah has said that gambling is forbidden to Muslims. How could we have been happy knowing that the food we ate and the clothes we wore would send us to the Fire in the Hereafter? Our gain caused others to go hungry and naked!
“Yes, Khadijah,” Hassan said. “I know you are right. For these very reasons I gave up gambling, but it has brought us nothing. I thank you for helping me out of that bottomless pit. All praise belongs to Allah for His guidance. Still, poverty is bitter and the shamefulness of being needy is almost unbearable.”
Upon hearing these words, Khadijah consoled him saying, “Oh Hassan, it is only temporary. Allah says that with every difficulty comes relief. The life of the Hereafter is the real and endless one. We still have hope. This future, everlasting life is the one we should care about and make ready with good deeds. Don’t regret what has passed; instead, thank I Allah for possessing the means of obtaining His forgiveness. Happiness belongs to those who are patient while facing hardships and avoid disobeying Allah.”
“Oh Khadijah, I am not without hope, but I’m afraid that Satan will cause me to sin- then I will fall and lose everything.”
“I still have my gold wedding ring,”...