The last few years have been challenging to say the least. 2023 presented immense trials for families worldwide. It marked the lingering effects of the most severe pandemic in a century, a worsening global energy crisis, increasing inflation rates and food insecurity, not to mention the disastrous impact of climate change.
As another year ends, rather than just setting life goals, how about we re-evaluate ourselves and strive towards being better human beings, in turn more pious Muslims. Let's work towards living life according to the virtues our Prophet Peace Be Upon Him and becoming conscious of Allah (swt) in our lives, leading to more Barakah in this life and preparing us for our final destination in the hereafter, InshAllah.
For those of you who have a hard time keeping up with your five daily prayers (salah), it is important that you follow a routine and make time for this important obligation, Inshallah.
Prayer constitutes one of the five pillars of Islam, a mandatory act of worship. Through prayer, we submit to our Creator, and establish a connection with Him. Making time for reciting and understanding the Quran is also critical. Not only does reciting the Holy book bring blessings, but incorporating its teachings into your daily life can lead to immense Barakah, Inshallah.
Honesty forms the bedrock of all relationships. There are numerous quotes in the Quran and Hadith which emphasize the importance of remaining honest, fair and transparent in personal and professional aspects of life.
The Prophet (SAW) was quoted as saying: “Remember, there is no faith in him who is not trustworthy; there is no place for him in religion who cares not for his pledged word or promise.”
Another quote from our Prophet (saw) reads: “Truthfulness leads to righteousness, and righteousness leads to Paradise. In addition, a man keeps on telling the truth until he becomes a truthful person. Falsehood leads to wickedness and evil-doing, and wickedness leads to the (Hell) Fire, and a man may keep on telling lies till he is written before God, as a liar”. (Saheeh Al-Bukhari)
“Oh ye who believe! Eat not up each other’s property by unfair and dishonest means.”
“Woe to those that deal in fraud, – those who, when they have to receive by measure from men, exact full measure, but when they have to give by measure or weight to men, give less than due. Do they not think that they will be called to account- on a Mighty Day when (all) mankind will stand before the Lord of the Worlds.”
“Allah doth command you to render back your trust, to those to whom they are due.”
According to Islam, “every act of goodness is charity.” (Sahih Muslim, Hadith 496). Though helping people financially is a fundamental aspect of charity, performing good deeds and staying away from evil is also important. Even smiling at someone is considered an act of charity. Below are some quotes from the Quran and Hadith about charity.
“Your smile for your brother is charity” (At-Tirmidhi, 187)
“The believer’s shade on the Day of Resurrection will be his charity.” Al-Tirmidhi, Hadith 604
“Charity in secret, quiets the wrath of God and takes away one’s sin as the water puts out the fire and keeps away seventy kinds of calamities.” (Quran 2:271)
“Charity is for those in need, who, in Allah’s cause are restricted (from travel), and cannot move about in the land, seeking (For trade or work)” (2:273).
“O you who believe! Do not cancel your charity by reminders of your generosity or by injury, like those who spend their substance to be seen of men but believe neither in Allah nor in the Last Day (2:264)
Islam encourages kindness and compassion towards everyone, no matter, one’s religion, social status or ethnicity. There is particular emphasis in the Quran to be kind to one’s parents and orphans.
The Prophet (saw) said: “Indeed among the believers with the most complete faith is the one who is the best in conduct and the most kind to his family.” (Sunan Tirmidhi, Hadith: 2612).
Ayah number 107 of Surah Al-Anbya states that: “And We have sent you O Muhammad (SAW) not, but as a mercy for all of humankind, jinn and all that exists.”
Additionally, The Prophet (saw) relayed the importance of being kind to animals.
“A good deed done to an animal is like a good deed done to a human being, while an act of cruelty to an animal is as bad as cruelty to a human being."
"Whoever is merciful even to a sparrow, Allah will be merciful to him on the Day of Judgment."
Be conscious of Allah's (swt) presence in your life, and Allah will bless you. Some Quranic quotes below emphasize the importance of being God fearing.
"Indeed, God is with those who fear Him and those who do good." (Quran 16:128)
"And My mercy encompasses all things, and I shall decree it for those who fear Me." (Quran 7:156)
"He is worthy of being feared and worthy of granting forgiveness." (Quran 47:56)
"And whoever fears God – He will pardon him his sins and grant him a great reward." (Quran 65:5)
"Indeed, those who fear God will be among gardens and rivers, in a seat of truth near an All-Powerful Sovereign." (Quran 54:54-55)
Amidst life's hustle, it is important to manage your time well so you can maintain a work-life balance, and dedicate time to other areas of your life including family, fitness and the community. A weekly planner can be an excellent tool to ensure you stay on track and achieve all your goals by the end of the week, Inshallah.
May this year bring us closer to our creator InshAllah, and may we continue to work on ourselves to be better Muslims with taqwa and Iman. Ameen.
Save Lives Through your Sadaqah and Zakat
Muslim Hands Canada is a registered charity that aims to tackle the root causes of poverty worldwide. Since it’s inception, the organization has responded to numerous emergencies worldwide, and established a myriad of long-term projects like water wells, schools, health clinics, and livelihood programs.