رَبِّ إِنِّي لِما أَنْزَلْتَ إِلَيَّ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَقِيرٌ
qala rabbi innī limā anzalta ilayya min khayrin faqīr
My Lord! I am indeed in need of any good You may send down to me!
(Sūrat al-Qasas, No.28, Āyat 24)
The Quran has many beautiful Du’ās that we can use daily. One such Du’ā that we should add to our collection of supplications is the one mentioned in this verse. It is the Du’ā of Prophet Mūsā ‘alayhis salām when he reached the city of Madyan.
The previous verses narrate details of Prophet Mūsā(a) as he reached the city of Madyan. When he arrived, he saw a multitude of people giving water to their flock and he found two women standing off to the side waiting patiently for the crowd of shepherds to leave. He finds out from them that they had been waiting a while and their modesty did not allow them to move forward into the group of men. Prophet Mūsā (a) did not remain passive and allow for this situation to continue. Through his kindness and desire to help others, he procured water for their flock and then said a quiet prayer to Allah (swt) asking for good from Him.
We learn an important lesson from Prophet Mūsā (a) here. He was hungry, thirsty, and alone in a foreign land. Yet the first thing he did was to help others who were in need. He did not pity his own condition. He teaches us the need to make an effort to pay attention to others’ needs before our own. Imam Ali ‘alayhis salām has said, Whoever prefers others to himself deserves to be called a person of virtue. (Ghurar Al-Hikam)
Although Prophet Mūsā (a) had many needs of his own at that time, he didn’t ask for them. Instead he said: I am indeed in need of any good You may send down to me! He recognized that Allah ‘azza wajall has better knowledge of what we need than we do ourselves. This one prayer perfectly encapsulates servitude. Acceptance that any and all good comes from Him. More importantly, whatever comes from Him is good!
It is after this act of selflessness and turning towards Allah subhānahu wata‘ālā to fulfill his needs that the doors of Prophethood for Nabi Mūsā (a) opened up. Through this one request his loneliness came to an end and he found a home. He was blessed with a pious and caring wife. It also brought him to Prophet Shu‘ayb (a) and he benefited from his guidance which prepared him to become one of the greatest Prophets of Allah.
We cannot underestimate the power of this Du’ā. The next time you have an opportunity to do good for someone else, hasten towards it, even if it means inconveniencing yourself a little. And then turn towards Him sincerely with this Du’ā and He will give you more than you ever expected. It is they who hasten to every good work and these who are foremost in them.(Q: 23:61)
Sources: Āyatullāh Nāsir Makārim Shirāzī (Ed.), Al-Amthal fí Tafsír Kitáb Alláh al- Munzal, ‘Allāmah Muhammad Husayn Tabātabā’ī, Tafsīr al-Mīzān