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|Ramadhan Warriors - a khutba by Muhammad alShareef|
|11/03/02 at 23:23:34|
A khutbah By Muhammad Alshareef
Sahl ibn Sa'd - radi Allahu 'anhu - narrates that An-Nabee - sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam - said, "In Jannah there is a gate called Ar-Rayyan, a door which the Saa'imoon will enter from, no one else except them. It will be announced, 'Where are the Saa'imoon?' and the Saa'imoon will stand. No one except them will enter from the Rayyan gate."
Have you ever heard of a weekend warrior? They are employees who sit in cubicles and relax at a coffee station weighed down with donuts all week long. Then on the weekend they rip off their suits bearing their Reebok gear underneath and spend the entire weekend playing basketball, hang gliding, and mountain climbing. What happens? They break their knees, pull a dozen muscles, and are hospitalized on Monday.
This is in relation to the physical body. But there are people that should be known as Ramadan warriors. They are those that haven't fasted all year long and then shock their bodies with a whole month. Or haven't prayed in the Masjid or haven't woken up to pray in the night all year long. What happens to them? As one Muslim doctor said, "In normal days, we have about 5 - 7 patients a day. On the first day of Ramadan,the patients increase to over 50!"
Ramadan warriors were rare in our Islamic history. To illustrate, let's all remember where we were at the beginning of Safar - corresponding this year to the second week of May. We were probably praying for work to end, or just finished up with exams, or looking through brochures for a holiday getaway.
Interestingly, if we were sitting beside a taabi'ee over a thousand years ago in a simple Masjid, we would have heard him raising his hands asking Allah to grant him the blessing of being around when a guest comes, a guest called Ramadan!
There are different ways that we can 'warm up' for Ramadan. One of those ways is by increasing the frequency of our Du'a:
Allah ta'ala says in the Qur'an ... the verse before it is talking about Ramadan and the verse after it is speaking about Ramadan, and right in the middle we read: [And when My servants ask you, (O Muhammad), concerning Me - Indeed I am near. I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls upon Me. So let them respond to Me (by obedience) and believe in Me that they may be guided.]
- Surah Al Baqarah 2/186
Every goodness on earth is from Allah. And one of the most exclusive blessings is Ramadan. So let us ask the Lord of Ramadan to help us find His Mercy in the coming days.
Last year, we gave a khutbah here on Hajj entitled 'The Call of Ibraheem'. A brother just a few weeks ago told me that during that Khutbah he raised his hands to Allah and asked Allah to find him a way to make Hajj. He said that he had no money to make the trip, but that night more then one brother approached him with the offer, "Brother we have a Hajj program for new Muslims, would you like to come!" Alhamdulillah, that brother made Hajj last year from a Du'a that came straight from the heart - in sha' Allah.
The early generations of the Ummah used to make Du'a 6 months after Ramadan that Allah accept their deeds in Ramadan. And for the next 6 months, they would make du'a to Allah to grant them the blessing of being alive in the coming Ramadan.
Cleanliness - Whenever a guest comes, we prepare in advance for his arrival by vacuuming the carpet, dusting the shelves, and scrubbing the sinks. We should do this for our guest called Ramadan. But the scrubbing should not just be of our physical surroundings, it should include the scrubbing of our sins.
Listen to the words of an-Nabee - sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam - speaking about those people that don't want to clean up for Ramadan, "Whoever doesn't desist from speaking falsehood and acting upon it, Allah has no need that he desist from his food and drink." - Bukhari
Fasting in Sha'baan (this Month that we are now in) - The biggest downfall of the weekend warriors was that they were not properly warmed up for the exercise which caused the injuries. Similarily, when Fasting, some people only do it once a year making their bodies very foreign to going without food and drink.
From here we see the following Sunnah: Umm Al-Mu'mineen Aisha - radiAllahu 'anha - observes, "Allah's Messenger never fasted an entire month other than Ramadan and I haven't seen him fast more than he did in Sha'baan."
A poet said: Oh ye who isn't satisfied with his sins in Rajab / so much so that you continqed disobedience in Sha'baan / The month of fasting has now come upon you / so do not convert it also to a month of disobedience.
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