In a couple of days time, we will be, with the grace of Allah, blessed with the holy and noble month of Ramadan. And, unfortunately to a lot of the Muslims, this beautiful month is perceived as a month of thirst and hunger, and is also perceived as a month where people get tired and they become lazy and they sleep most of the day and play most of the night. Ramadan is unlike this.
Ramadan is a season where Muslims should prepare themselves before entering this season. This is what the prophet (salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam) used to do. He used to fast most of the month that comes before Ramadan, which is the month of Sha’ban, and when he was asked, ‘Oh Prophet of Allah, why do you fast this month?’ He said that it is a month between the month of Rajab and the month of Ramadan.
A lot of the Muslims seem to ignore or neglect it and that is why I would love to remember Allah, and be grateful to Him by fasting these last few days of Sha’ban. So this is one means of preparation for the month of Ramadan, which is by fasting the month that precedes it, so that it would be like a training session for you.
Most of us have debts, have problems, have illnesses, have needs, and we don’t seem to get the answers to our problems because we are not asking the right questions, and we are not asking the people, or we are not asking those who can answer our problems. In Ramadan, it is a gift from Allah, where you can find all the solutions for your problems and all the answers for your questions. If you knock on Allah’s door, eventually it will be opened and your request will be answered, only in the month of Ramadan. Write a list of what you want. Try to gain your thoughts and gather them so you that know what to seek from your Lord. Because in Ramadan you have to be certain that this is the time for your wishes and hopes and prayers to be answered.
The prophet said (salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam) that among those whom Allah answers their prayers and supplications, among them is a person who is fasting when he breaks his fast. So imagine yourself, a few minutes before sunset, before breaking your fasting, few minutes before your iftar, imagine yourself with all the burdens and troubles you carry on your shoulder, when you sit there, in humility, when you sit there in poverty to Allah’s generosity, raising your hands, praising Allah, giving salutations to the prophet (salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam) and asking Allah for whatever you want, knowing that Allah will answer your call. Knowing that Allah will give you what you have asked for. If you do this every single day until the month of Ramadan is over, by the grace of Allah your call will be answered, your problems will be solved, and your questions, in sha’Allah, with the grace of Allah, would find an answer to them.
This month of Ramadan is a month of worship, of giving charity, of night prayer. Not only that, it is a month of forgiveness, it is a month of pardoning others. It is a month of excelling and doing your best at your work and in your studies so that non-Muslims would look and say ‘SubhanAllah, he is hungry and thirsty and he did not have a bite for twelve or fourteen hours and look at him, ma sha’Allah he is doing his level best to improve and to excel in his job. This is a wonderful religion.’ Compare this man to that who comes to work late and leaves from work early, and whenever he is assigned to do something, he complains that he is fasting and you people do not have any mercy.
What kind of an impression he would leave about Islam in their sight? So, this is an opportunity for us to take, I know that we are a month ahead but you cannot go in the field and expect to do good results in the match if you did not have the proper training. The month of Sha’ban is a suitable month for you to train by fasting as many days as you can, by dedicating more minutes and hours to your night prayer at night, so that when Ramadan comes you are feeling at home and you will utilise it to the very best.
I pray to Allah that we reach Ramadan in piety, in righteousness and in fear of Allah and that Allah will grant us the full utilisation of our time to recite the Qur’an, to make dhikr, to fast as Allah loves us to do, and to give charity and to pray night prayer in taraweeh and in tahajjud and with the grace of Allah we will be able to attain night prayer in the night of decree, Laylat al Qadr, which is better than a thousand months of worship, and whoever does this, Allah will forgive their sins. And I pray to Allah that we will be among those who their sins will be forgiven. And Allah knows best.