Dear brothers and sisters, it is with Allah SWT’s blessings that all of our days are not the same, and that there are many blessed days and times that we can worship with added rewards, or increase in status, or forgiveness of bad deeds. And it is truly the one who is blessed and successful who benefits from these gifts
The imam mentioned a hadith in which the Prophet SAWS said:
Strive to do good all your life, but be ready for Allah’s gifts, as He has gifts that comes from his mercy to give to whomever he wishes from his slaves, and ask Him to cover you and remove your fear.
Dear brothers and sisters, although we live a short life, we have been given great blessings and opportunities in our lives, as if these actions once taken it ‘extends’ a life – for example a thousand months worship in one night as mentioned in the Quran for the night in Ramadan.
And just like this, we have a blessed time in this month and that is the first 10 nights of this month as is mentioned to us by scholars. It is said this is the period mentioned in the first ayats of Sura Al-Fajr as is sworn on by Allah SWT.
Alongside this, we know that the blessing of this period of the year is attributed to the Hajj being performed as well as the sacrifice/Qurbani that is done.
We also know that this is the period in which our religion was completed, i.e. the day of Arafa.
In fact, the most blessed of days is the day of Arafah, a blessed day in which millions will be performing and completing their Hajj this year insh’Allah.
However, for us non-Hajis, the blessing of this day is also available in the form of the forgiveness of sins as is mentioned in the hadith relayed to us by the imam.
It is translated to say that the Prophet SAWS said:
“Fast the Day of Arafah, for indeed I anticipate that Allah will forgive (the sins) of the year after it, and the year before it.”
And so, if it is difficult to fast in any of these days, we should aim to fast on the day of Arafa in order to benefit from this blessing from Allah SWT.
We shouldn’t forget also, alongside the fasting on the day of Arafa, is the blessing of the supplications made to Allah SWT on this day. The Prophet SAWS is reported to have said:
“The best of supplication is the supplication of the Day of `Arafah. And the best of what I and the Prophets before me have said is: None has the right to be worshipped but Allah, Alone, without partner, to Him belongs all that exists, and to Him belongs the Praise, and He is powerful over all things.
And so we conclude with 5 practical tips to make the most of this period.
- Increase in Good deeds. This is the time to step it up a gear. The imam relayed a hadith in relation to this which says the Prophet SAW said:
“There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than those ten days.” They said: “O Messenger of Allah! Not even Jihad in Allah Cause?” The Messenger of Allah said: “Not even Jihad in Allah’s Cause, unless a man were to out with his self and his wealth and not return from that with anything.”
- Pray all fard prayers in the masjid and in first row if possible. Alongside this, increase in the Sunnah prayers as to maximise the reward for the period we are in.
- As mentioned before, we should use this time to fast as much as possible for the sake of Allah SWT. And at the very least during the day of Arafa
- We should be as charitable as possible during this time. The imam mentioned a hadith in relation to this which translated to say:
Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “If one give in charity what equals one date-fruit from the honestly earned money and Allah accepts only the honestly earned money –Allah takes it in His right (hand) and then enlarges its reward for that person (who has given it), as anyone of you brings up his baby horse, so much s that it becomes as big as a mountain.
- We should aim to increase our dhikr or remembrance of Allah SWT. Whether this is through increase in supplication or through some other act of worship, this is the time to remember Him as He has blessed us with a great reward in these 10 days.
Dear brothers and sisters, we can see that we have now entered a blessed time of the year and next week we will be in the midst of preparing for this blessed day of Arafa as well as preparation for the festival of Eid. However, we mustn’t lose sight of the reward we can gain between now and then as we are now in the blessed period as mentioned in today’s reminder.