Being Thankful to Allah




Alharamain Foundation

The other day while watching a network
news program, I saw a Muslim woman in Kosova with her six-month-old infant,
who was covered in sores and suffered from a malady of illnesses, all because
it had not had a bath since its birth.


The mother explained that because of the
heavy fighting, she and her family had been on the move constantly, and
that luxurious such as decent food and clean water were not available to
them. As the mother of a six-month-old infant myself, this struck to the
very hart of me. Bath time for my son and I, is a very special time filled
with play and laughter. It’s a ritual we share everyday, and the fact that
I would have clean water with which to bathe him, was something, until
then, every time I bath my son, I try to remember to thank Allah, subhanahu
wa ta’ala, for His Mercy to me. It also reminds me to be thankful for all
the other “little things,” that I take for granted everyday.

From the very beginning of Man’s creation,
the issue of gratefulness and thankfulness to Allah has been debated. After
refusing to bow to Adam, Satan said,

“Then I will certainly come to them
from before them and from behind them, and from the right-hand side and
from the left-hand side, and Thou (Allah) shall not find most of them thankful.”

This statement from the worst of Iiars
has proven to be true, not only among the disbelievers, but also among
the Muslims. Unfortunately, we Muslims have fallen into the trap of Satan,
and have gotten so caught up in our comings and goings, that we very rarely
take the time to reflect on the Favors of Allah, and to thank Him with
the thanks that is due Him. We are so busy conducting our daily lives that
we forget who is really in-charge, and from where our sustenance comes.
This is not the way, for Allah says,

“Therefore remember Me, I will remember
you, And be thankful to Me, and do not be ungrateful to Me.” [The Noble
Qur’aan [2:152]]

The problem that most of us face is what
I call the, “if I only..” Syndrome. If I only had a better wife, I would
be grateful. If I only had sons instead of daughters, I would be grateful.
If I only had a bigger house, a better car, more money, a better job, and
the list goes on and on. We are constantly focused on the things we don’t
have, instead of being grateful to Allah for the things we do have.

This is a very serious illness, for which
the Prophet (Pbuh) has given the cure. He, peace be upon him, admonished
us, in terms of worldly things to always look to those beneath us, for
this will keep us thankful. Allah says about the Prophet (Pbuh) that in
him we have the best of examples. In terms of showing us how to be thankful
to Allah, subhanahu wa ta’ala, he is as Allah says. It is narrated by al-Mughira
that the Prophet,(Pbuh) used to stand (in the salah) or performs salah
until both his feet or legs swelled. He was asked why (he offered such
an unbearable salah) he said, “Should I not be a thankful slave.” [Bukhari]

As the Prophet (Pbuh) advised us, the best
way to stay thankful to Allah is to count His Favors in our lives everyday.
For Allah says,


“And He gives you all that you ask
for. But if you count the favors of Allah, never will you be able to number
them. Verily, man is given up to injustice and ingratitude.”

[The Noble Qur’aan [14:34]]

This statement of Allah is so true, yet
we put so little value on it, and do not take heed.

The very fact that we got up this morning,
that we can offer the salah that we had breakfast, that we have clothes
to wear, water to bathe ourselves, that we have homes to shelter us from
the elements, that we have our health, our families, etc., etc., etc.,
are all favors from Allah, subhanahu wa ta’aala. We should take non of
it for granted, or become arrogant enough to believe that we attained any
of it because of our own efforts alone.

Thankfulness frees the heart from greed,
jealousy and envy. When we are thankful to Allah, we remain mindful of
Him and His continuos Mercy toward us, and this in return humbles us and
improves our characters. The very fact that Allah has guided us to Islam
and the sunnah of His Prophet (Pbuh) in itself should be a source of continual
praise. Allah says,


“Surely We have shown him the way:
he may be thankful or unthankful.”

[The Noble Qur’aan (76:3)]


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