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The Story of the Bartender Who Converted to Islam

Not too long ago, I met a brother who came up to me. He wanted to accept Islam and take the Shahadah. It was in Midwest somewhere in Ohio.

He’s a white guy. He told me that he’s a bartender his whole life. I don’t know how he found one of my videos or something in YouTube and he started watching a bunch of them. He went through the entire Juz of Amma tafsir which I’ve done… but he went through the whole thing.

Sitting in the bar, just plugging in the ear and he’s pouring drinks for his friends. For six months he took Shahadah on his own, no Muslims around him. Actually, he did tell me that he does have Muslim friends regulars at the bar. He asked them a few questions about Islam.

So he took the Shahadah and said: “You know, I’m ready to leave this life. I haven’t had a drink.”

A bar tender who hasn’t had a drink for six months. When you look at him, you are not going to know that this guy has taqwa (piety) but I can guarantee you, that man has more taqwa than most of us. The situation he is in and the way he holds himself back and then he finally quit, no savings or nothing.

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He quit… saying: “I can’t do it anymore, I can’t go back.”

Even the companions of the Prophet were not given the verses to quit alcohol right away. They were told the harm and the sin is greater than the benefit and they were told at least don’t be drunk when you are about to pray, then years later they were told to leave it altogether.

Allah didn’t reveal one time “Leave alcohol.” And this man left alcohol on his own once he heard about Islam.

That’s taqwa. But when you look at him, you wouldn’t know, you would have no idea. Don’t put people down. Don’t think of them as less than you, they may be way better than you are..

O you who have believed, let not a people ridicule [another] people; perhaps they may be better than them; nor let women ridicule [other] women; perhaps they may be better than them. And do not insult one another and do not call each other by [offensive] nicknames. Wretched is the name of disobedience after [one’s] faith. And whoever does not repent – then it is those who are the wrongdoers. (Quran 49:11)