“If the light of deep faith shines on you, you will see the hereafter before journeying to it, and you will see the trappings of this world vanishing before your eyes.”
In this journey to Allah, there is a short journey and there is a longer one. The short one is in this world and the longer one is after death. And this has to be a part of the worldview of the believer.
The believer doesn’t think that the world here is life; it is actually a small part of life. The real life is after death.
What is Your Focus?
Therefore, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) had taught us that when you wake up in the morning, you should not have the life of this world only as you’re thinking and planning, but you should think and plan about the rest of your life. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
Whoever makes the Hereafter his goal, Allah makes his heart rich, and organizes his affairs, and the world comes to him whether it wants to or not. And whoever makes the world his goal, Allah puts his poverty right before his eyes, and disorganizes his affairs, and the world does not come to him, except what has been decreed for him. (At-Tirmidhi)
When you open your eyes in the morning, you should ask yourself:
“What is the first thing that I am thinking about? Is it something related to Allah and my journey to Him? Or is it something that has to do with the material world?”
What’s the first thing that comes to mind and the first step of anything I do in the morning? Do I wake up in the morning and pray? Or do I wake up in the morning and I am just busy with the world; am I running after what I’d like to do in the world?
If you open your eyes and you’re thinking of so and so and such and such, then you should know that you are punished by that! This is something that is going to bring you panic and loss, as the Prophet Muhammad said here.
But if you open your eyes and you are thinking of Allah and how to do something good with your day that takes you closer to Him, then you should know that you are on the right way.
Yes you could go to work, university, college… You could do what you are supposed to do with family, friends, or colleagues… but your heart, is it with Allah trying to please Him? Or is your heart busy with the material world and what you are trying to do?
How to Direct My Life to Him?
The question is how can I direct my attention to Allah? It is to look at what I have and direct it towards Allah.
But seek, through that which Allah has given you, the home of the Hereafter; and [yet], do not forget your share of the world. And do good as Allah has done good to you. (28:77)
This is an advice given by the friends of Kurah. The friends of Kurah advice him, “yes you are rich, use your richness to take you closer to Allah and don’t forget your rightful share in this world.”
But he rejected that; he insisted on just the share of the world, and the material world, but not to do anything with what he is given for Allah.
There is no harm in caring for the pleasures in this life, but life should remain in our hands and not in our hearts. That is the essence of this step.