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Mosque Foundation | Bridgeview, Illinois

Mosque Foundation

Welcoming a Generous Guest

first friday prayer is at 12:30pm.second friday prayer is at 2:00pm

Welcoming a Generous Guest

O Allah, Make Us Among the Mossaddiqeen

Only several weeks ago, the Masjid was overflowing with those seeking to benefit from the blessed month of Ramadan, worshipping Allah through prayer, fasting, and offering charity and good works. Allah ﷻ, through His vast generosity, has blessed His servants with yet another opportunity to gain His mercy and forgiveness. In a few days, Muslims from opposite corners of the earth will begin their pilgrimage to the Sacred House of Allah ﷻ, emulating the footsteps of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and fulfilling Allah’s answer to the prayer of Prophet Ibrahim to make the hearts of people incline toward this holy city so that they may establish prayer. He ﷻ swears by these very days in Surat al-Fajr: “By the dawn; and by the ten nights.” (Quran 89: 1-2) How significant these days are for Allah the Most Exalted to swear by them.

And so, while our brothers and sisters begin their pilgrimage and join others in humanity’s most significant expression of submission to their Lord ﷻ, those of us who will not accompany them this year should also embark on our spiritual journey making the most of this blessed time. Prophet Muhammad ﷺ described the ten days of Dhul-Hijjah, “There are no days in which righteous deeds are more beloved to Allah than these ten days” (Bukhari). He ﷺ also said, “There is no deed that is better before Allah or more greatly rewarded than a good deed done in the (first) ten days of al-Adha.” (Al-Daarimi) How often are these days taken for granted? What a shame considering they are the most blessed of all days.

So, brothers and sisters, I remind myself to use this opportunity to reflect on our purpose in this life and engage in the most righteous of deeds to build a home for ourselves in the next and permanent life. The value of this life equates to how we use it for the next. Therefore, we must engage in worship until the moment of death: “And worship your Lord until there comes to you the certainty (death)” (Quran 15: 99).

Aside from performing Hajj and Umrah, it is Sunnah for us to fast the first nine days of Dhul-Hijjah as the Prophet ﷺ used to fast them. This fast includes the Day of ‘Arafah when the pilgrims climb the mountain of ‘Arafah beseeching their Lord to forgive them and save their skin from Hellfire. Prophet Muhammad ﷺ has said, “Fasting the day of ‘Arafah expiates the sins of two years: the past one and the coming one. And fasting the day of Ashura expiates the sins of the past year” (Muslim).

During these days, we should actively engage in remembering Allah ﷻ through takbeer (Allahu-Akbar), tahmeed (Alhamdulilah), tahleel (La-ilaha-illa-Allah), and tasbeeh (SubhanAllah), aloud and quietly. As Prophet Muhammad ﷺ reminded us, “There are no days greater before Allah or in which good deeds are more beloved to Him than these ten days, so recite a great deal of tahleel, takbeer, and tahmeed during them.” (Ahmad)

We should also do our best not to miss an opportunity to gain good deeds through praying voluntary prayers, reciting from the Quran, making dua’a, reconciling with family and friends, honoring parents, giving charity, volunteering our time, and enjoying what is good and forbidding what is evil.

The ten days of Dhul-Hijjah are an excellent opportunity to repent since a Muslim actively seeks ways to worship Allah and thus feels remorseful about past or present evil deeds. Through worship, we can evaluate our thoughts and actions and account for ourselves before the Day comes when we are accounted for. In this reflection, we should take responsibility for our actions and return to Allah in sincere repentance, abandoning all thoughts, words, and activities which displease Allah ﷻ, and adhering firmly to what Allah loves.

Finally, during these days, we should also offer an udhiyah (animal sacrifice) as it is a confirmed Sunnah to do so and one of the significant rituals through which a Muslim remembers the Oneness of Allah, His blessings upon him, and submits in obedience as Prophet Ibrahim did before us. This can be done here or abroad. Allah ﷻ says, “So pray to your Lord and sacrifice (to Him alone)” (Quran 108:2).

Much will be gained during this time, so we must hasten to take advantage of it. Let us not be among those who are too arrogant to render our hearts to our Creator’s gentle reminder and mercy and are regretful on the Day when all deeds are revealed. We ask that Allah ﷻ accept the pilgrimages of our brothers and sisters who have been blessed with the opportunity to do so and grant us a chance to fulfill this pillar of Islam if we have not. May Allah ﷻ forgive us and all of our brothers and sisters in Islam who have preceded us and will follow us and accept our deeds and their deeds. Ameen.

By Sh. Jamal Said