The imam mentioned in this weeks khutba Sura Al-Furqan ayat 74 which is translated to say:
And those who say, “Our Lord, grant us from among our wives and offspring comfort to our eyes and make us an example for the righteous.”
Dear brothers and sisters, who doesn’t want to be proud of their children? And most of us here are blessed to have that feeling as to be born in this time and place and growing up as a Muslim is hard and is worthy of praise but it is also a test for the parents to ensure that they are doing all that is within their means to raise good, productive Muslims in the time and place that we are living in.
The effort that we as parents place into our children will not only benefit them in this life and the next it will also affect the community as a whole as we are raising the next generation of our Ummah, it is they that will be the future leaders and role models for the rest of society. They will carry the torch of being ambassadors for the truth.
This is no small issue as how they are will directly reflect on how we were with them. The Prophet SAWS said in the following hadith, a reference to this point:
When a man dies, his deeds come to an end except for three things, Sadaqah Jariyah which is a endless charity such as planting a tree, a knowledge which is beneficial which is the knowledge passed onto others, and a virtuous descendant who prays for the deceased such as the children.
Dear brothers and sisters, if we analyse then, we have the opportunity to continue earning good deeds for our next life even after we have left this life. This is no small point that how we raise our children then has a direct effect on our hereafter.
We should therefore make it so that our children become our priority over career, over leisure and over day to day running that are designed in their very nature to distract us from our faith and what is important in life.
With that being said, this reminder concludes with 6 practical tips that we can all begin with today in regards to our children.
- Understand each child is unique. This means that children cannot be moulded or pushed into directions we like for them. We ought to understand what makes our child unique and identify the uniqueness of them and nurture them within the limits of Islam.
- Embed the love and power of Allah into them. This means by starting off with La-illaha-ilallah but moving them towards understanding that provision comes from Allah SWT alone and that all that we are, have and will be will come from Him. Teach them about how Allah SWT loves us and that we can reciprocate that love in being obedient to Him.
- Establish the extreme importance of Salah. This is vital. Instill into your children that no matter what they may do in life, whatever mistakes they may make, and they will because we are all human and prone to error, that the salah can never, ever under any circumstances be given up. And get yourselves and them in the habit of praying it punctually.
- Engage them in beneficial activities. Examples like walks in the park and encourage them to appreciate the creation of Allah SWT. Alongside that engage them in physical activities like sports or martial arts. Society has us believe that the screen, whether it be smartphone, TV or computer is an adequate babysitter. It’s not so let’s aim to keep their mind active with other beneficial activities.
- Family meetings. Engage in family meetings where each member gets to have their say about any issues with them. All phones are switched off and as parents, the undivided attention should be on the child when they speak and all council meetings like this in the family should be run in a non-judgemental way so that it promotes an open environment for the child to feel confident to open up about anything that is bothering them.
- Make Quran a routine part of life. Whether this be through listening to it, reciting it or having family meeting to talk and discuss an ayat from it, the Quran is a key part of any child’s upbringing and is mentioned by Allah SWT as a warning in the Quran in Surat Furqan, ayat 30 mentioned by the imam today which is translated to say:
And the Messenger has said, “O my Lord, indeed my people have taken this Qur’an as [a thing] abandoned.
Dear brothers and sisters, when we become parents, we are raising the next generation of our Ummah and so we must endeavour to leave our teaching to a high standard within them, but alongside that we are also raising our replacements and as a result we must ensure that when we do depart from this world, we leave behind pious and productive Muslims that can benefit us in this life even when we are no longer part of it.
May Allah SWT protect our youth. May Allah SWT enable us to raise pious Muslims and may Allah SWT reward us in our efforts to raise pious Muslims.