As I was revising notes from NAK’s lecture on putting our talents to good use, I realise how timely these notes are for me currently as I embark on my teaching career while simultaneously striving to progress in my side passion project. I have been tired and uninspired for quite a while now to be honest. It’s not a fun place to be, this lull of of inspiration, this vapid state of being, between want and can’t, somewhat paralysed by the inability to create or make progress. I can blame it on commitments, but I know there will always be roadblocks in every journey towards discovery; everything worthwhile requires patience and growth.
I am reminded of how I should always keep asking Allah for more of what He has given me so I can benefit and reach out to others to benefit from it too. Allah has given you and me talent, ability, money, creativity – we need to use it for something much bigger, for they will ultimately remind you of Him. When Allah gives you resources, do good stuff, take care of it – put it to good use for the deen. You have to be your best when you do Allah’s work. There is no such thing as an insignificant task, so don’t belittle the task that you do. Even a volunteer is of the same value as a manager in Allah’s eyes.
We know Prophet Suleiman was blessed with power, an entire kingdom in his hands. His leadership is meticulous – he even knew when one bird has gone missing. But when Suleiman was exhausted from all his responsibilities, he would come back to Allah. He would say, ya rabb, master, please forgive me, my good may not be good enough. We are going to do good things and ask Allah for tawbah, and acknowledge that they can be better.
We all have a vision for something. We need to actualise our strength. When Allah provides endless resources to us, invest our resources. Don’t save it. Spend it for good. We don’t separate worldly life and spiritual life. We excel in this worldly life for a higher goal. Akhirah is for people who don’t have dunya… in their hearts.
Prophet Ayoob on the other hand wasn’t given the same blessings as Prophet Suleiman. Prophet Ayoob was tested quite the opposite. He was tested with no control over his family and even his own body. Allah gives us tests – sometimes good, sometimes the opposite. But these are just means to an end. Difficulty and ease are just a means to an end.
We are all going to excel in our fields because we have a higher purpose – no matter what career we are in, we will excel for Him. Whatever resources we have at our disposal, max them out. Allah does not burden a person except with their own potential. The only thing that we should fear is our deluded incapabilities. Allah burdens us with capability and potential. So set our goals to do good for a higher purpose, and push ourselves to it.