Once a businessman was in a hurry to a meeting. There was a poor man on the road holding a little boy in his hand. Give me some money, I beg you, my son is sick!
The businessman looked at his watch and saw he was late. I don't give you now, but when I finish my work, I'll come back and help, he said.
Then he went further. When he finished his meeting, the businessman went back the same way. The man stood there, but the boy was no longer with him. Give me some money so I can bury my son, he said. The businessman was stunned and understood that he made something wrong. Maybe if he had helped before, that little boy would still be alive.
Help is help when it comes in the time of need. Do not help expecting reward from people, but do it for the sake of Allah. He will settle the matter of reward. The question of today is not where the money is, but where the Muslims are? But we could also ask in general: where are the humans?
The humans? They stand in front of a mirror that is distorted. Everybody. This mirror shows when they look at what they are not. There are problems with self-esteem. Ego, identity, I'm better, my problem is bigger. But if something runs well for me, only for me can be good! But self-esteem cannot exist! Allah is the One, who judges. And when the time of vicissitudes come, people pray ten times more, asking for the help of Allah! This is similar to the person who is polluted once then washes himself ten times in succession.
When we give him a taste of some Mercy from Ourselves, after some adversity has touched him, he is sure to say, "This is due to my (merit): I think not that the Hour (of Judgment) will (ever) be established; but if I am brought back to my Lord, I have (much) good (stored) in His sight!" But We will show the Unbelievers the truth of all that they did, and We shall give them the taste of a severe Penalty. (Quran 41:50)
When men entertain false ideas of values in life, there are two or three possible attitudes they may adopt in reaction to their experiences. - In the first place, their desire may be inordinate for the good things of this life, and any little check brings them into a mood of despair. - In the second place, if their desire is granted, they are puffed up, and think that everything is due to their own cleverness or merit, and they forget Allah. - Not only that, but they go a step further, and begin to doubt a Hereafter at all! If by chance they have a faint glimmering of the Hereafter, which they cannot help recognizing, they think themselves "favored of Heaven", because of some small favors given to them in this life by way of trial. Thus, they turn all things, good or evil, away from their real purpose, because they are devoted to falsehood.
When We bestow favors on man, he turns away, and gets himself remote on his side (instead of coming to Us); and when evil seizes him, (he comes) full of prolonged prayer! (Quran 41:51)
The last verse and note dealt with men's distortion of the values of life. Here we come to men's ingratitude and hypocrisy. If they receive good, they go farther away from Allah, instead of coming nearer to him. If they suffer ill, they call on Allah and offer prolonged prayers, but it is not sincere devotion and therefore worthless.
But as the text reveals, man is like that always, not just today. The Scripture serves us to educate ourselves. Nobody else is expected to do it except you.