Reach out to them in matters of faith.How can I serve my faith in the course of my daily life? What contribution can I make as I go about my normal business? This is a question that many of us ask ourselves and it is a very good question. The Prophet said, “Every person goes forth in the morning trading in his own self. He either earns its freedom or consigns it to misery.” Therefore, we ask ourselves: Should I focus on enjoining people to what is right? Should I forbid them from what is wrong? Is it best for me to gather together the children and help them to commit the Qur’an to memory? Should I rather get involved in some charity work? The ways that we as Muslims can serve our faith are too numerous to count. If each one of us only tries to count the ways that he or she can personally serve Islam, the possibilities will still be endless. Each of us must take into account his individual abilities as well as his inclinations and his personality in deciding what he should do. Nevertheless, there are some general guidelines that apply to everyone and some contributions that we can all start making immediately. To begin with, we can try to set a good example for others. We can do this in our worship, in our dealings with others, and in our moral conduct. We can strive to always be considerate and just. We can give priority to the rights of others even if it means doing so at the expense of our own. This is the starting point of all of our service and indeed it is the most critical. The next level of activity concerns our dealings with our family and with those who are close to us. We must nurture our good relationships with our relatives by honouring them doing good for them. It is our duty to call our family to Islam and to encourage them to do what is right. This duty starts with our parents and children, then with our siblings and spouses, and extends outwards. Allah says, addressing the Prophet: “And admonish your nearest kinsmen.” A L – Q U R’A N 42:214 After this verse was revealed, the Prophet gathered his kinfolk together and said: “O assembly of Quraysh! Purchase your own souls, for I can avail you naught with Allah. O tribe of Banu `Abd Manaaf! I can avail you naught with Allah! O Safiyyah, aunt of Allah’s Messenger! I can avail you naught with Allah! O Fatimah, daughter of Muhammad! I can avail you naught with Allah. Ask me of my wealth what you wish, but I can avail you naught with Allah!” We must then turn our attentions to our colleagues and our classmates. We should always be willing to lend them our assistance. By letting them know that they can count on us, we win their friendship and their trust. In turn, we can reach out to them and even get them involved with us in our good works. They will be more responsive to us when we offer them literature or a cassette or ask them to go with us to a lecture. We must also attend to our neighbours and the communities in which we live. Our neighbours have rights over us simply by virtue of their being our neighbours. We must honour those rights. We should cultivate goodwill between ourselves and those who live in our neighbourhood. This makes it easier for us to reach out to them in matters of faith.
A hadith (Prophet Muhammad’s teaching) about God’s mercy and hereafter
This beautiful hadith a from the hadith collection of Bukhari,
Volume 1, Book 12, Number 770:
Narrated Abu Huraira:
The people said, “O Allah’s Apostle! Shall we see our Lord on the Day of Resurrection?” Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings upon Him) replied,
“Do you have any doubt in seeing the full moon on a clear (not cloudy) night?” They replied,
“No, O Allah’s Apostle!”
“Do you have any doubt in seeing the sun when there are no clouds?”
They replied in the negative.
He said, “You will see Allah (your Lord) in the same way. On the Day of Resurrection, people will be gathered and He will order the people to follow what they used to worship. So some of them will follow the sun, some will follow the moon, and some will follow other deities; and only this nation (Muslims) will be left with its hypocrites. Allah will come to them and say, ‘I am Your Lord.’ They will say, ‘We shall stay in this place till our Lord comes to us and when our Lord will come, we will recognize Him. Then Allah will come to them again and say, ‘I am your Lord.’ They will say, ‘You are our Lord.’ Allah will call them, and As-Sirat (a bridge) will be laid across Hell and I (Muhammad) shall be the first amongst the Apostles to cross it with my followers. Nobody except the Apostles will then be able to speak and they will be saying then, ‘O Allah! Save us. O Allah Save us.’
There will be hooks like the thorns of Sa’dan in Hell. Have you seen the thorns of Sa’dan?” The people said, “Yes.” He said, “These hooks will be like the thorns of Sa’dan but nobody except Allah knows their greatness in size and these will entangle the people according to their deeds; some of them will fall and stay in Hell forever; others will receive punishment (torn into small pieces) and will get out of Hell, till when Allah intends mercy on whomever He likes amongst the people of Hell, He will order the angels to take out of Hell those who worshipped none but Him alone. The angels will take them out by recognizing them from the traces of prostrations, for Allah has forbidden the (Hell) fire to eat away those traces. So they will come out of the Fire, it will eat away from the whole of the human body except the marks of the prostrations. At that time they will come out of the Fire as mere skeletons.
The Water of Life will be poured on them and as a result they will grow like the seeds growing on the bank of flowing water. Then when Allah had finished from the Judgments amongst his creations, one man will be left between Hell and Paradise and he will be the last man from the people of Hell to enter paradise. He will be facing Hell, and will say, ‘O Allah! Turn my face from the fire as its wind has dried me and its steam has burnt me.’ Allah will ask him, “Will you ask for anything more in case this favor is granted to you?’ He will say, “No by Your (Honor) Power!” And he will give to his Lord (Allah) what he will of the pledges and the covenants.
Allah will then turn his face from the Fire. When he will face Paradise and will see its charm, he will remain quiet as long as Allah will. He then will say, ‘O my Lord! Let me go to the gate of Paradise.’ Allah will ask him, ‘Didn’t you give pledges and make covenants (to the effect) that you would not ask for anything more than what you requested at first?’ He will say, ‘O my Lord! Do not make me the most wretched, amongst Your creatures.’ Allah will say, ‘If this request is granted, will you then ask for anything else?’ He will say, ‘No! By Your Power! I shall not ask for anything else.’
Then he will give to his Lord what He will of the pledges and the covenants. Allah will then let him go to the gate of Paradise. On reaching then and seeing its life, charm, and pleasure, he will remain quiet as long as Allah wills and then will say, ‘O my Lord ! Let me enter Paradise.’ Allah will say, May Allah be merciful unto you, O son of Adam! How treacherous you are! Haven’t you made covenants and given pledges that you will not ask for anything more that what you have been given?’ He will say, ‘O my Lord! Do not make me the most wretched amongst Your creatures.’
So Allah will laugh and allow him to enter Paradise and will ask him to request as much as he likes. He will do so till all his desires have been fulfilled . Then Allah will say, ‘Request more of such and such things.’ Allah will remind him and when all his desires and wishes; have been fulfilled, Allah will say “All this is granted to you and a similar amount besides.”
Abu Said Al-Khudri, said to Abu Huraira, ‘Allah’s Apostle said, “Allah said, ‘That is for you and ten times more like it.’ “Abu Huraira said, “I do not remember from Allah’s Apostle except (his saying), ‘All this is granted to you and a similar amount besides.” Abu Sahd said, “I heard him saying, ‘That is for you and ten times more the like of it.”