“She’s Still Small”
Haarith bin Haarith (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) narrates that they saw Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) inviting people to bring imaan in the oneness of Allah Ta‘ala. The people, however, continued to reject and harm him. Their ill treatment continued until it was eventually midday and the people dispersed. At that point, a girl came to Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) carrying a bowl of water and a cloth while her upper chest had become exposed. He took the bowl from her, drank some of the water and then made wudhu. He thereafter raised his blessed head and said to her, “O my beloved daughter! Cover your chest and do not fear for your father!” We enquired as to who the girl was and were told, “This is Zainab (radhiyallahu ‘anha), his daughter.” (Majma‘uz Zawaaid #9827)
1. Despite the fact that the people had been, just moments ago, relentlessly harming and rejecting him, the priority of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) was to make his beloved daughter, Zainab (radhiyallahu ‘anha), aware that a portion of her chest was exposed so that she may cover it. Even in these circumstances, Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) could not tolerate the body of a woman being exposed.
2. As parents we need to be firm in ensuring that our children, especially our daughters, are dressed correctly and appropriately. This even relates to ‘small things’ such as deep necklines and short sleeves. Making excuses such as “she’s still small” result in their habits being spoilt until “they get too big” to be told.
3. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) advised Zainab (radhiyallahu ‘anha) to turn her attention to Allah Ta‘ala and not fear for her father (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). When a robbery occurs or there is a car accident (may Allah Ta‘ala save us), although we dial the police, ambulance etc., our focus should first turn to Allah Ta‘ala and we should bear in mind that everything lies in His hands. Similarly, we should work to inculcate this mindset and awareness within our children.