“Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.” - Epictetus
Two days ago, hubby asked me "babe, who does our money belongs to?" I blinked at him a couple of times, wondering if this is a trick question. Hubby is beginning to sound like the Wise Owl. Would he be upset if I answer all his money belongs to me? Hehehe....
So, I answered, "I believe that all our wealth belongs to God Almighty. It's only on loan to us hence we are answerable for every penny that we squandered away" .
Then hubby said that the beauty of the ‘loan' that was given to us is that when we give it away for charity or spend it in the way prescribed by God, the rewards will be given to us. It's like we borrow money and whatever returns of investment made on the money, we get to keep.
I remember the Wise Owl telling me the same thing years ago. Of course at that point of time I panicked, thinking about the amount of 'loan' that I wasted away. Oooooo my handbags and jewellery....!! Yikes! Am I in trouble?
Upon seeing my face turned deathly pale, the Wise Owl smiled, as if he could read what was going through my head. Then, he calmly explained, "sister, whatever money that you have earned, you may spend it on yourself as long as it is not spent towards Haram things or wasteful. But, however, you must always remember that the wealth does not belong you so when God sends someone your way, asking for help, you must help if you are able to. Don't be stingy or selfish"
"Believers are merely those whose hearts feel wary whenever God is mentioned and whose faith increases when His verses are recited to them. On their Lord do they rely. Those who keep up prayer and spend some of what We have provided them with are truly believers" (Quran 8:2-4).
Asmah related that the Prophet said: Spend, and do not count, lest Allah counts against you. Do not withhold your money, lest Allah withholds from you. Spend what you can. (Bukhari, Muslim)
Abu Huraira related that the Prophet said: The Lord's commandment for every one of His slaves is, ‘Spend on others, and I will spend on you'. (Bukhari, Muslim)
We must never hoard our wealth. Pharaoh believed that he could take his wealth to the grave and be buried with it but he was wrong. I, for one, have no intention of being like Pharaoh, though I must admit that sometimes, it is difficult to let go of certain things.
" They who hoard up gold and silver and spend it not in the way of God, unto them give tidings (O Muhammad) of a painful doom" (Quran 9:34).
In actual fact, no one can be proud of their so called wealth because it is never theirs to begin with. We are merely custodians and it can be taken away from us in a blink. We can be stripped off the custodian title whenever He wishes. Then, we might find ourselves to be on the other side of the fence, ie the receiving end.
Every day, I do try to remind myself that my money is His money so don't get too attached or spend it in the way that can incur His wrath but being human, of course, I do suffer from the occasional memory lapse. Still, the important thing is, I keep trying....
"Give the kinsman his due, and the needy, and the wayfarer, and squander not (your wealth) in wantonness. Lo! the squanderers were ever brothers of the devils, and the devil was ever an ingrate to his Lord" (Quran 17:26-27).
Abu Said Khudri related that the Prophet said: There are two habits which are never present together in a believer: miserliness and bad manners (Tirmidhi).