In Surat Al-Qasas, Allah Almighty recounts the journey of Prophet Musa (peace be upon him) when he ran away from Egypt after having accidentally killed a person by punching him.
The journey took Prophet Musa to the water of Midian where he found a bunch of people giving water to their sheep and, beside them, two women were having trouble with their animals, pulling and tugging as if they were at war with the sheep and not really winning.
It looked weird for Musa that these women were struggling in this way while everybody was comfortably feeding their animals. He went up to the ladies and asked, what is your problem? What’s going on here?
Here is a huge lesson: We are supposed to have modesty and to guard our tongues and eyes but when someone is in trouble, there’s nothing wrong with you going and asking: Can I be at your service? What is going on here?
You have to remember, though, that Musa (peace be upon him) did not go to have an elaborate conversation or to make a small talk. He just went and asked: What is going on with both of you?
More insights about the ethics of dealing with the opposite sex, as revealed in the story of Prophet Musa and the two ladies, in this episode of Qur’an Weekly, Hosted by Nouman Ali Khan.