Umar and the Shepered

When Umar Ibn Al Khattab was anonymously traveling around the environs of Madinah, dressed in his usual old and tattered clothes he came upon a young shepherd tending his flock.

Umar requested that he milk one of the sheep so he could satisfy his thirst. He offered the young boy money for the milk.

The shepherd said he would willingly give him a drink, but the sheep were not his, they were entrusted to him by the owner and he did not have the owner’s permission to offer any milk to anybody.

Umar being the wise guardian of his people took the opportunity to test this young boy suggesting that he sell him one of the sheep so he could milk it and then slaughter it later if necessary, while the shepherd profits from the money Umar was prepared to pay him.

He offered the shepherd an explanation for the missing sheep suggesting he tell the owner that a wolf had eaten one of the flock, that nobody would know the truth. The young shepherd exclaimed, “What about Allah?””

This story teaches us that even when we are alone we have to be certain that Allah is watching us. This is the only thing that prevents us from doing a sin while we are alone. It prevents us from betraying our bosses like the shepherd boy.  It prevents us from lying since nobody knows that we are lying.

When you do all the good deeds because you know that Allah is watching, people around you will know that muslims have good manners. And that is dawah. When you don’t betray people around you because Allah is watching, that is dawah. When you say the truth because Allah is watching, that is dawah.

We must be aware that Allah is watching us all time, and we have to fear Allah. As this fear increases, our Iman increases.

Try to have ihsan in all your deeds, as Allah is watching you, and having ihsan is a way of dawah to the people around you.

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