Hadith: “One who eats gratefully has the status of one who fasts patiently.”
When we learn about the rewards of having gratitude towards Allah, it will motivate us to be more grateful for all that He has blessed us with. We read in a hadith about the status of a person who is grateful:
Abu Huraira reported: The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “One who eats gratefully has the status of one who fasts patiently.” (Sunan al-Tirmidhi)
There is much for us to learn from this hadith. We already know that fasting is an act of worship that is very rewarding, but perhaps we did not even realise that a person who eats and is grateful for what they are eating has the same status as a person who fasts with patience. When we reflect on this we realise how important it is for us to be grateful for the food Allah has blessed us with. We should avoid complaining about food or being ungrateful about what we have. We should not compare what is written for us to what is written for others.
As believers, we should be grateful when Allah grants us something good, but we should also be grateful for our struggles, as they give us opportunities to improve ourselves. We develop our patience and become more sincere in our reliance and dependence on Allah. There is a reward in everything, we only need to try our best to seek it. We read in a hadith where the Prophet (SAW) spoke about this:
Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqas reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “I am amazed by the believer. If he is granted goodness, he praises Allah and is grateful. If he is afflicted with a calamity, he praises Allah and is patient. The believer is rewarded for every matter, even feeding a morsel of food to his wife.” (Musnad Aḥmad)
We learn a great deal from Prophet Muhammad (SAW) about developing our gratitude and trying to think in a way that makes us look more at what we have than what we don’t have. We read in a hadith:
Anas reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, would say when he retired to his bed, “All praise is due to Allah who has fed us, given us drink, sufficed us, and sheltered us. How many are those who do not have enough and have no shelter?” (Sahih Muslim)
Just reflecting on this hadith for a moment makes us realise that we have all been given blessings. We all have a lot to be grateful for, even if the views of the world around us make us think otherwise. We notice that having food, drink and shelter are all things we really should be immensely grateful for. There are countless people who do not have some or either of these things.
May Allah make us amongst those who are sincerely grateful for everything they receive and go through in life, whilst having complete trust and faith in their Lord. May He make it easy for us to realise that there is reward in everything, whether it is through our patience during struggles, or our gratitude for our joys. Aameen. Indeed, Allah is Al-Kareem (The Most Generous).