Say, “I am only a man like you, to whom has been revealed that your god is one God. So whoever would hope for the meeting with his Lord – let him do righteous work and not associate in the worship of his Lord anyone.” (Quran 18:110)
Every day is a new opportunity to serve your Lord who, “…did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me.” (Quran 51:56)
To be a Muslim means you constantly look at your intentions to see whether you’re serving your Lord or following your own whims and desires. As days melt into weeks and months become years, it’s easy to lose sight of your intentions and fall astray. Yet it is your intentions that count the most!
Are you praying because Allah Almighty decreed prayer for you? Or are you praying to show your piety to others?
Are you giving in charity for the sake of Allah? Or is it to throw your wealth around to impress those around you?
Check your intentions every day and you’ll walk a path of righteousness that leads to Paradise. New Muslims, especially, can benefit from living a ‘purposeFULL’ life in complete worship of Allah Almighty.
Intentions at Home
The home is where the heart is. We work hard to create comfy havens and sanctuaries to seek respite from the hardships of daily life. It is safe place to raise our children in care and comfort. However, the home can also become a distraction that pulls you away from what you were created to do – worship God alone.
With all of the smart devices and gadgets, the modern home has become so technologically advanced that families spend more time with electronics than they do with each other. And worship often falls to the wayside.
Check your intention when it comes to your home. Your home is a blessing from God, use it wisely. Utilize your home as a place to hold Islamic study groups, as the base for a charity drive or even as a Launchpad for calling others to Islam.
For new Muslims, make the best possible use of your home for worship and to engage in activities that are pleasing to God.
Intentions in the Workplace
Distractions and workday obstacles often make the workplace one of the hardest places to live out your intentions to please God. This is especially true for new Muslims who return to work dressed Islamically and might face push-back from their co-workers. However, with some clever planning and resolve, it is possible to fulfill your intentions to please God throughout the course of the workday.
Fasting is just one area where Muslims, born and reverts alike, often struggle whilst in the workplace. Non-Muslim co-workers sipping on hot coffee or happily noshing on breakfast pastry is pure torture for a fasting Muslim.
However, if you purify your intentions and fast solely for the pleasure of God, you can beseech your Lord for help to get through the fasting day. Keeping your mind on your own work and limiting interacting with others during the lunch hour are other great ways to maintain your fast.
Other intentions, such as reading a portion of the Quran each day or performing the noon prayer at work, are equally important to please your Lord. Spend that next coffee break wisely and make the intention to increase your Islamic knowledge during those minutes!
What’s the first thing you do when you log online? Most likely, you check Facebook to catch up with friends and then Gmail to see who emailed you overnight. You’ve probably never thought to check your intentions when making use of the Internet, have you?
The Internet is both a blessing and a curse. It can be used with the best intentions to teach others about Islam and network with the global Ummah for the sake of Allah.
Unfortunately, it’s mostly a curse! It’s a primary source of temptation amongst Muslims and a tool of the devil to lead man away from his Lord.
Check your intentions when it comes to using the Internet. It should not be used for idle talk or entertainment, but rather as a tool in the service of God’s creation.
New Muslims can use it to connect with more seasoned Muslims to perfect their Islam. And all Muslims can use it to bridge the gap with the interfaith community while working to negate the media-fueled negative stereotypes through meaningful dialogue.
A purposeFULL life, rooted in seeking the pleasure of your Creator, is a blessing that should never be taken for granted. While others may not even notice they’re not living with the best intentions to fulfill the rights God has upon us, you are aware and have limitless potential in living each day to the fullest.