“My iman (faith) is really low,” a sister recently expressed to me. “There was a point in my life where I tasted the sweetness of being connected with Islam and Allah, but I just don’t feel anything any more. And I see the effect it has on me. I’m doing things I’m not supposed to do. I feel bad, and I say I won’t do it again, but I do.”
Check it out: we all mess up, subhan’Allah (Glory be to Allah). Adam (may Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala send His peace upon him) was told by Allah Himself not to go near the tree:
“And O Adam, dwell, you and your wife, in Paradise and eat from wherever you will but do not approach this tree, lest you be among the wrongdoers.” (Qur’an, 7:19)
And yet Adam (`alayhis salam) still fell. Adam was not commanded by a parent, a boss, or a spouse; it was Allah Who gave this order to Adam (peace be upon him) directly. And yet Adam still ‘messed up’. So what about you and I?
Look, we all sin and we all massively fall; we feel a tremendous decrease in our iman, an enormous distance in our once-close relationship with Allah, and we begin to find ourselves slipping away from the sweet connection we once had with Allah in a downward spiral which seemingly has no way up. However, let us not despair! There is major hope!
Allah, the Most High, has told us in a Hadith Qudsi:
“O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins nearly as great as the earth and were you then to face Me, ascribing no partner to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great at it.”
Allahu Akbar (God is the Greatest)!
We have a Lord Who loves for us to turn back to Him when we keep making mistakes! Our mistakes are opportunities for us to turn back, revamp and ignite our relationship with Allah ‘azza wa jal!
Here’s an idea: let’s stop dwelling on the fact that we feel lightyears away from Allah. Let’s stop lamenting the sins we keep accumulating and the time we keep wasting and the mistakes we keep making. Instead let’s just snap out of it and turn to Allah right now! Let’s say:
Allahumma anta rabbee la ilaha illa ant, khalaqtanee wa-ana AAabduk, wa-ana AAala AAahdika wawaAAdika mas-tataAAt, aAAoothu bika min sharri ma sanaAAt, aboo-o laka biniAAmatika AAalay, wa-aboo-o bithanbee, faghfir lee fa-innahu la yaghfiruth-thunooba illa ant.
‘O Allah, You are my Lord, none has the right to be worshipped except You, You created me and I am Your servant and I abide to Your covenant and promise as best I can, I take refuge in You from the evil of which I committed. I acknowledge Your favor upon me and I acknowledge my sin, so forgive me, for verily none can forgive sin except You.’
Do you know what the reward is for saying this supplication? The Prophet ﷺ has told us that, “If somebody recites it during the day with firm faith in it and dies on the same day before the evening, he will be from the people of Paradise and if somebody recites it at night with firm faith in it and dies before the morning he will be from the people of Paradise.”
Allahu Akbar. Let’s just move forward!
Once we have realized and regretted our mistake[s] and have asked for the forgiveness of Allah ‘azza wa jall, let us overload on good deeds to wipe out the bad deeds, insha’Allah. Below are just a few easy-to-do actions which insha’Allah will fill our scales with an enormous amount of brownie points:
- Ask Allah to forgive your brothers and sisters: “Whoever seeks forgiveness for believing men and believing woman, Allah will write for him a good deed for each believing man and believing woman.” [at-Tabarani, classed as hasan by al-Albani]
- Du`a’: The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: ‘Whoever says subhanAllah wa bi hamdih (praise and glory be to Allah) 100 times, morning and evening, his sins will be erased even if they are like the foam on the sea.” [Bukhari and Muslim]
- Dhikr: If a person says “SubhanAllah” (glory be to Allah) 100 times, a thousand good deeds are recorded for him and a thousand bad deeds are wiped away. [Muslim]
- Remember Allah when you go shopping: “Whoever enters a market and says: ‘Laa ilaha illallah wahdahu la shareeka lah, lahul mulku wa lahul hamdu yuhyi wa yumeetu wa huwa hayyun laa yamoot, bi yadihil khair, wa huwa ‘ala kulli shayin qadeer’. [There is nothing worthy of worship except Allah, alone without partner, to Him belongs dominion and praise, He causes life and death and He is the Living and does not die. In His Hand is all the good, and He is over all things competent]. Allah will write for him/her a million good deeds and erase a million bad deeds and raise him a million levels. [at-Tirmidhi, classed as hasan by al-Albani]
- Make the following du`a’ after eating: Alhamdullilahelathi ataamani hatha, wa razaqnihi, min ghayre hawlin minny wa la quwah. All praise is for Allah, who fed me this and provided it for me without any might or power from myself. From the benefits of this dua: The person’s past sins will be forgiven [Tirmithi and Ibn Majah]
Finally, let us always think the best thoughts of Allah!
Allah Most High tells us in a hadith Qudsi, “I am as My servant thinks I am. I am with him when he makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assembly better than it. And if he draws near to Me an arm’s length, I draw near to him a fathom’s length. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him at speed.” Let us have certainty that Allah will forgive us if we are sincere, and let us know that when we take steps towards Allah, Allah will come to us and bring us close to Him.
As Imam Suhaib once reminded us, “You might be far from Allah, but, He is close to you! Turn to Him and you will find Him.”