Be patient over what they say and remember Our servant, Daud, the possessor of strength; indeed, he was one who repeatedly turned back [to Allah]. Indeed, We subjected the mountains [to praise] with him, exalting [Allah] in the [late] afternoon and [after] sunrise. And the birds were assembled, all with him repeating [praises]. And We strengthened his kingdom and gave him wisdom and discernment in speech. (Al Qur'an 38:17-38:20)
The Devotion Of Daud AS
Despite his kingship, Daud AS led a humble life. He only ate from what he earned with his own hands, in that he never helped himself to the state coffers for his personal benefit.
He constantly glorified Allah at all times, always remaining thankful and humble despite his high station amongst the people. He was not dazzled or enslaved by his material belongings nor his status as a ruler, and always realised that he was a slave to Allah. He often shed tears out of love and devotion to his Creator. He was in constant prayer and remembrance of Allah, and spent every alternate day fasting, such that Allah says that his was the best prayer:
Rasulullah (SAW) said: "The best prayer to Allah is the prayer of Daud, and the best fasting to Allah is the fasting of Daud; he slept for the first half, then woke up for one-third of the night and prayed, and then he slept for the rest of the one-sixth. He fasted with the gap of one day, and whenever he met his enemy, he never backed off." (Bukhari & Muslim)
Lessons to be learnt
Lessons for the wealthy
The stories of the Prophets and Messengers, when understood in their entirety, has a situation that matches everyone's circumstances. Most of the Prophets and Messenger that we had talked about did not come from a high strata in society, nor were they wealthy. In fact, most of them were exceedingly poor. In this, the message to us is that the lack of money should not be an impediment to being a worshipper of Allah, and one cannot blame his lack of status or wealth as an excuse.
What if the person is wealthy? The story of Daud AS teaches us that even in wealth, we are to worship Allah and devote ourselves to Him. Daud AS was extremely wealthy, but that did not prevent him from fasting every other day, or worshipping Allah devoutly every night. His heart was not clouded by materialism, and his actions were not motivated by greed and the love of accumulation. In fact, he remained humble, earned his own keep, and spent his assets on aiding the poor and the needy.
Wealth should not make us arrogant, nor neglect our worship – if anything, living in comfort should be a means of increasing our worship to Him, both because there are no obstacles in the form of hardship, and also as praise and thanks to Him for all His bounty upon us.