“If you want the doors of hope in Him open, recall what he offers you; and if you want the doors of awe of Him open, recall what you offer Him.”
In this case, the Sheikh here is taking us through to another step, which is the balance between two concepts: the awe and the hope.
How do I open the door of awe?
If I feel that I don’t fear Allah enough, how do I open that door to my heart?
He is saying here: “Remember what you offer Him.”
Remember how much He gives you and how much you offer Him; how much He blessed you with many things, and how much you have shortcomings and you have mistakes, and so forth.
When you remember your mistakes, and you remember your shortcomings, you immediately open the door of fear from Allah. Because I am feeling that this fall in short is going to get me in trouble…
If, on the other hand, I feel that I would like to feel hope, I would like not to despair and actually it’s a moment of trying to seek hope here, what do I do?
Remember what He offered you. He gave me so much. And that opens the doors of hope in His mercy and His generosity. And I really can’t count Allah’s blessings:
Should you try to count Allah’s blessings, you would never enumerate them. (Qur’an, 16:18)
But when I start to compute Allah’s blessings, I try to count how much He gives me, this will open the door of hope. Because this will show me how generous He is. Therefore, I’m hoping in more generosity and more blessings that He will give me since He gave me so much in my shortcomings.
Between Fear and Hope
On the other hand, if I remember my shortcomings, this will open the door of fear and the door of awe. And actually both of them are like the wings of the bird; you really can’t fly with one wing.
Fear of Allah is one wing and hope is the other wing. You really can’t advance and fly in the way of Allah without both: without being concerned about your destiny in the Hereafter and what Allah is going to judge you about. And also feeling hopeful that Allah’s mercy is so wide and He has given mercy in so many forms in this world; and therefore mercy would balance with the feeling of fear so that I can advance.
This is the key here
And when you read the Quran, it will open both doors for you: it will open the door of fear as much as the door of hope.
Allah always talks about His punishment with His reward:
Know that Allah has a severe punishment and He is also most forgiving and most merciful. (Qur’an, 5:98)
When He talks about Paradise, He talks about hellfire; when He talks about His anger and wrath upon those who disbelieve in Him. He talks about His pleasure with those who believe in Him.
And the Quran will take you through this journey of balancing awe and hope so that you advance in the way of Allah.
We ask Allah to give us that.