Be a giver, the spark that ignites the goodwill in others.
To start off, I will mention that we tend to lose out on the love in our relationships because we no longer show gratitude. You may not realise how important it is to do this, but in not doing so, that individual does not feel needed by you. The expression of gratitude isn’t necessarily in words alone, rather it is important for it to be shown in your actions. This means also by not underestimating the so-called small things – they actually matter the most.
If you want to feel important to a person, if you want that they love you, then show them that they are important to you. In doing the small things that matter to them. Don’t make a relationship about you. Don’t make loving a tiresome thing. Think about them. Be considerate of them. Don’t expect that they will always be there. Because believe me, they won’t. They will leave when they’ve exhausted themselves after investing too much and receiving nought from it, as the balance on that scale was ill-maintained. A relationship works both ways, and requires adequate input from parties to keep that scale in balance. If you don’t receive the love back, then you no longer invest into it.
But charity is different. It’s about giving without expecting anything in return. Charity is giving because it matters in your relationship with Allah swt. For Allah swt loves those who give in charity. But when forming relationships with people we do so with a different attitude in mind. As the people we form relationships with, will need to invest into the relationship properly for it to stand the test of time, in that both individuals give to the other in various ways to make the recipient happy. It’s to support the social fabric of any society, that we humans are in need of to sustain a healthy manner of living in an ethical and moral way.
Know that charity ranges from not just donating money to the less fortunate. It comes from smiling at people, helping people, imparting beneficial knowledge upon others, sharing important advice to those in need, it can be just about anything that you are able to do to help another person. As with any act of charity, you obviously do so without expecting anything in return, you do this kind of selfless act for Allah’s sake, because that is what He swt wants you to do as His believer. You see, charity is about giving to others what they are in need of, something that you would also do in your relationships with people. So for a relationship to truly last indefinitely in this world till your hereafter, you always give in charity to one another. It creates love between people and gains you the love of the Lord – for you make Allah swt happy, you make that person happy, whilst he/she makes you happy.
With that perspective in mind and agreed upon, you can see that therefore, charity and relationships are indeed synonymous.
It is all in the giving.
Abu Dharr reported: some of the people from among the Companions of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said to him: Messenger of Allah, the rich have taken away (all the) reward. They observe prayer as we do; they keep the fasts as we keep, and they give Sadaqa out of their surplus riches. Upon this he (the Holy Prophet) said: Has Allah not prescribed for you (a course) by following which you can (also) do sadaqa? In every declaration of the glorification of Allah (i. e. saying Subhan Allah) there is a Sadaqa, and every Takbir (i. e. saying Allah-O-Akbar) is a sadaqa, and every praise of His (saying al-Hamdu Lillah) is a Sadaqa and every declaration that He is One (La illha ill-Allah) is a sadaqa, and enjoining of good is a sadaqa, and forbidding of that which is evil is a Sadaqa, and in man’s sexual Intercourse (with his wife, ) there is a Sadaqa. They (the Companions) said: Messenger of Allah, is there reward for him who satisfies his sexual passion among us? He said: Tell me, if he were to devote it to something forbidden, would it not be a sin on his part? Similarly, if he were to devote it to something lawful, he should have a reward. [Sahih Muslim 1006]
Abu Dharr (ra) reported that the Prophet (SAW) said, “Indeed the gates to goodness are many: glorifying God, praising Him, magnifying Him, saying ‘There is no god but Allah,’ enjoining the good and forbidding the wrong, removing harm from the road, making the deaf hear (and understand), guiding the blind, showing the seeker his need, striving as far as your two legs could carry you and with deep concern to give succor to him who asks, carrying with the strength of your arms (the burdens of) the weak. All these are (acts of) charity.” And he added, “And your smiling in the face of your brother is charity, your removing of stones, thorns, and bones from people’s paths is charity, and your guiding a man gone astray in the world is charity for you.” [Authenticated by Al-Albani]
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Please also check out an update on the following project by Human Aid UK carried out by fellow students at the University I study at: