It is this strong faith which can keep us focused on the fact that God alone controls all destinies and has ultimate power over all things. Remembering that fact alone at the moment of affliction can help us in conquering the pain and provide the hope and the energy needed to keep moving forward.
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One revert sister Aisha, stated: “I am of those who chose an Islamic name because my past is something I want to disassociate with, and have taken on a new identity. Islam has transformed my life, so I chose a name to reflect my transformation."
I would like to share a few of my stories with you. These are my embarrassing first steps into Islam. I tell them to you so that you will not be afraid to go forward, knowing that we all have to start somewhere.
The angelic type of nafs finds happiness in that which brings it closer to Allah: the worship and remembrance of Him, showing gratitude to Him, patiently persevering in His cause and carrying out other acts of goodness.
If you are worried that you are failing in your prayers, know that God is Al-Ghaffar, the Perpetually Forgiving. If you feel the deeds you are doing for Him are not up to the mark then know that He is Ash-Shakoor, the Tremendously Appreciative.
He lived among them as one who was dearer to them than their souls. He was the sun of their lives. His death meant that they had to live in absolute darkness. For the Prophet to be withdrawn from their lives meant to them a vacuum which could never be filled.
What can we learn from the Prophet's character and how can we implement these learnings in our lives today? Can we always be truthful like him who was known as As-Sadik or the truthful one? Can we be kind in the face of adversity as he was? And can such kindness help us deal with Islamophobia?
Would you change? Would your resolutions be more likely to be successful? Would you show more appreciation to the people in your life? Would you begin to think about the source of life, and perhaps wake up more grateful every new day you’ve been given?
I recall very well that a catalyst for my interest in Islam 11-years ago happened to be the adab (good manners) of a Somali taxi driver who, incidentally, was always smiling.
Going from one false god to the next, I started to feel like the little bird looking for its mother in all the wrong animals. I was lost and broken. But, Alhamdulillah, God guided me back to Him. And because of the memory of all the pain shirk caused in my life, I remain vigilant in avoiding it.
Working to purify our hearts is a daily struggle that continues so long as our hearts are beating. However, we can be encouraged by the fact that the fruits of this struggle are not only vague concepts we can intellectualize, but tangible results we can feel and experience in this life. What are some of them?