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Assalamu Alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu
 
This is going to be a short one.
I am sometimes guilty of this myself so this is a reminder first and foremost to myself.
After believing in Allah and His Messenger, what is our first priority? SALAH! I have mentioned this before, but seriously – it will be the first thing we are going to be judged about. If it isn’t in order, then the rest of our deeds will not be looked at.
Nothing should come before it – NOTHING! Not our husbands, not our parents, not our children – NOTHING! We need to stop making excuses – I’ll serve my husband his food first. I’ll feed my kids first. We’re out and we say, ‘I’ll pray when I get home’ – when we know that by the time we get home it will be time for the next salah.
When its time to pray, its time to pray and we need to make this our priority before anything else. Just as we’re quick to drop everything and answer the phone or respond to a text message, when the time for salah comes in – we should literally stop everything and just pray. There are no excuses. As I said, it is a reminder to myself first.
 
Wasalamuu alaikum
Umm Raiyaan

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Assalamu Alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu
 
Its freezing cold and we’re at that time of the year again in the UK where everything kinda comes to a standstill because of the snow!
 
Although it is very cold, I do love the snow. It makes everything look so pretty mashaAllah. And for me, it really reminds me of the Magnificence of our Creator.
 
A sister sent me this message this morning and subhanAllah, it just seemed to fit in very nicely with the weather conditions at the moment! A good reminder. MashAllah.
 
“The season of winter is the bounty of the believer, as it has shorter days (so that they could fast) and longer nights (so that they could pray all night in Qiyaam).” [Imam Malik]
 
SubhanAllah, how very true! Lets make the most of the season of winter and rush to earn the pleasure of Allah.
 
 
Wasalamuu alaikum
Umm Raiyaan
 
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Bismillah
Assalamu Alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu

Life is busy isn’t it?! SubhanAllah, if we’re working – it’s a rush in the morning – have to get a certain bus or train. If we have kids, then the list is endless and generally whatever our situation is, it just seems like we are running from one thing to another with an endless list of To Dos. Headless chickens sometimes right?!

I’ve been contemplating about a particular hadeeth recently. In the last few reminders, I have discussed the importance of small deeds done regularly but all of the optional good deeds are pointless if the following hadeeth is not understood fully and acted upon. This particular hadeeth scares me a lot actually.

Allah’s Messenger (saw) said:
“The first thing that the servant will be held accountable for, is the prayer. If it is good, then the rest of his deeds will be good. And if it is defective, then the rest of his deeds will be defective.”
At-Tabaraanee reported this hadeeth in Al-Awsat and there are not problems with it’s chain, by the Will of Allah. This is what Al-Mundhiree said in At-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb: Vol. 1, pg. 246***

What terrifies me is that we may be dutiful to our parents, be involved in dawah work, give regular sadaqa and try to uphold good characters but subhanAllah all of that would be in vain if our salah is not in order.

Often, salah is slotted in around our ‘busy’ schedules. The 12 sunnah prayers are neglected. We might pray the salah when the next salah time is just about to approach, we remember all sorts of things as we recite Quran during our salah and we jump up ready to carry on with our busy schedules without even pausing to utter the sunnat after the salah.

Sometimes we are fooled by Shaytaan into thinking that a certain good deed will earn us lots of reward and thus we rush our salah so that we can continue with that good deed. But subhanAllah, just imagine you are standing and sweating on the Day of Judgment, hoping that all those optional good deeds will earn you the pleasure of Allah and multiple rewards. But when your book is scrutinized, your salah has not been accepted as it wasn’t prayed with khushoo, it wasn’t prayed at the right time as you were just too busy.

So, the question is: What is the state of your salah? If you were to die today – would you be blessed to have all of those other optional deeds accepted or would none of them be considered because your salah was not in order. Such a person would surely be biting…actually eating his/her fingers in regret.

So, I’ve been thinking. What can we do to constantly try and improve the condition of our salah?

1. Choose one thing that you can strive to implement this week that will improve the condition of your salah. It could be making wudu before each salah even if you haven’t broken it. It could be saying the sunnat after each salah without fail. It could be trying to pray the 12 sunnah prayers without fail for the whole week. It could be focussing on what you are reciting. Whatever it is, try to implement one thing until it becomes a habit and then move on to the next.

Not only will this inshaAllah lead us to be those whose good deeds will be looked at because our lives revolved around the salah and not the other way around, but when our salah is performed properly there is a sweetness that I believe we can’t taste anywhere else.

Wasalamuu alaikum
Umm Raiyaan

Assalamu Alaikum All,


 
Last week, I mentioned living our lives this year so that we won’t be labelled as a Ramadan Muslim. This week did you do a good deed that you strove to do with zeal in Ramadan? It’s all about the small things done consistently. Sometimes we become over ambitious and want to read the entire Quran every month. Or we want to fast the fast of Dawud (AS) or we want to go to every lecture taking place in our local area. And then what happens? Thats right! We burn out and find that weeks and months have passed and we have hardly read Quran, have not fasted a single sunnah fast and have not even attended a single lecture.
 
Shaytaan knows that with some of Allah’s servants, he cannot attack them by making them do haram actions. So instead, he whispers to them to over exert themselves making them believe that they can become these wonderful Muslims in a matter of days if they do these great deeds!
 
So, it is about doing what you are capable of doing – but the key is in doing it regularly!! Everyone’s situation is different. Look at your life situation and set yourself realistic good deeds that you can do consistently. It could be reading a page of Quran a day, it could be fasting Mondays and Thursdays, it could be taking your mother or father out for the day once a month. Whatever it is – try and stick to it all year around.
 
A very dear sister has set up an intiative that is an easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy way of doing a good deed that will earn you reward regularly. Please do read her email which is in bold below.
 
So, what good deed can you do regularly that you can stick to? Only you can answer that question.
Allah (Swt) says in surah Al Imran, ayah 92: “By no means shall you attain righteouness unless you give (freely) of that which you love; and whatever you give, of a truth Allah knows it well.”
 
Take care
Wasalaam
Umm Raiyaan
 
 

 Assalaamualaikum,
May this reach you all in the best of health and Eeman.
Would just like to pass this on to everyone so that maybe as an Ummah we can do something for those less fortunate than ourselves InshaAllah.
Around December I went to a beautiful Masjid in Ladbroke Grove named Al-Manaar. Well worth the visit if your in the area, as MashaAllah they have so much going on and it’s a beautiful and clean Masjid.
On my way out I picked up a card which was asking for £1 a day.
On the reverse was an article about the plight of the street children in Morocco.
SubhanAllah it touched my heart so much as I have seen for myself how they live as my Husband is from there.
But unfortunately when the holidays over it’s so easy to forget.
Alhamdulillah because of that one card it inspired me to set up a sadaqa collection of just £1 a week from the sisters in my area.
We choose who at the time is in need and send it off, usually it goes directly to a person instead of a charity as at least they get 100% of the money.
The first month did go to Morocco and Alhamdulillah since starting we have helped a disabled sister who had a stroke who cannot walk or talk,  and amoungst others we gave to a build the Masjid project in Uganda so this was given as Sadaqa Jariyah,I have attached the photos below. The first bunch was the start of the build and the last bunch was sent to me yesterday with the progress they have made MashaAllah.  a local sister was helped to clear her debt, the Muslim Youth Helpline, an orphanage ion Gambia, and various other projects. The last month was sent to Uganda to a small village where we fed 10 families on Eid day and bought prayer mats for their Masjid.
As you know this sadaqa will benefit us even after we die InshaAllah.
MashaAllah with Allah’s blessing the project is gradually expanding.
Please sisters consider joining us as the more that are involved then the more money we can collect and help others.
The first £50 each month goes to Interpal as we have sponsored two beautiful orphans from Gaza, and I know that 100% goes to them there is no admin charges.
There is also another new project in the pipeline which a friend of mine is in the process of setting up that will need the funds also on a regular basis so that will need to be covered also InshaAllah.
Each month when we donate I always ask for feedback from the person on the receiving end so that we can all see for ourselves how beneficial and rewarding this can be.
All it will cost you is £1 a week which is paid either monthly, quarterly or annually, whichever suits you.
A small price to pay for such a beautiful reward.
I will either text you or email you each month with updates of where the money was allocated InshaAllah.
Please do salatul  Ihstikhara make your intention and then see what you think. If Allah has willed for you to join then Alhamdulillah that’s great.
I know we cant save the world but at least when we face Allah we can say that we tried to help in some way.
Who knows, that £4 you give could be your key to Paradise InshaAllah.
I ask Allah to accept it from us and I ask Allah to expand our cause to help our Brothers and Sisters who are suffering.
Please at least make dua for all the Ummah. That is why I called it Al-Huriyah Project which means The Freedom. Freedom from debt and oppression.
Anything good from this project is from Allah, any mistakes are from me.

Fi Amanillah.
Somayya.
mekkaouis@yahoo.com

P.S. Please feel free to email or phone me with any questions and or suggestions you may have.
And also if each person could encourage at least one of their contacts as well to donate that would be wonderful InshaAllah

Bismillah
 
Assalamu Alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu
 
SubhanAllah! Didn’t Ramadan fly by (as usual!). I truly cannot believe that eid was a week ago today. It was only roughly 10 days ago that we were all busy invoking Allah, crying out to Him (Swt), imploring Him, making sujood to Him and engaging in various acts of worship in the hope of seeking nearness to Him.
 
One question: are we carrying that flame of zeal with us one week on from eid? Only you can answer that question. If yes, then mashaAllah perhaps it is a sign that your Ramadan was accepted. And ameen to that!!!  If not, then why not? We often talk about those Muslims who only put on the hijab, only enter the masajid during the month of Ramadan. We label them as ‘Ramadan Muslims’. You know who I’m talking about: those Muslims who don’t see their boyfriend/girlfriend during Ramadan, who stop smoking, clubbing etc. But I ask you this: if we have answered no to the above question, then tell me, how are we any different???
 
If our dua, our qiyam, our siyam, our sadaqa, our kindness and generosity have stopped since the Muslims crashed the network with their 1000s of ‘Eid Mubarak’ messages – how are we any different? We too are only Ramadan Muslims. How sad.
 
So, how can we try and prove to Allah that we love Him and worship Him to the best of our abilities all-year-around? By developing istiqaamah (steadfastness).
Here are a few things that can help us develop istiqaamah:
 
1. DUA – Really begging Allah to keep us constant in our worship to Him.
2. QURAN – Reading, pondering and contemplating the Quran. Try to make a goal to finish the Quran at least once before next Ramadan! Doesn’t seem like much but how many of us actually recite the entire book of Allah in a year (aside for the month of Ramadan of course)?
3. VISION THE AKHIRAH – We’re all going there. So why not day dream about it. What would you like in jannah? Who will be there with you? What will you wear? How will you party??! lol
And of course, what would the opposite – hellfire be like?
4. COMPANIONSHIP – Team up with a fellow sister (and brothers with brothers) and push each other to remain steadfast. Set halal challenges between you. Race with one another. You could even compete in acts of ibadah with your spouse or children.
 
There are many other ways in which we can develop istiqaamah. But the most important thing for us to realise is that we don’t know when we will face the angel of death. If we’re privileged enough to be chosen to die in Ramadan then we’re kinda safe because we were a Ramadan Muslim. But if we don’t die in Ramadan (and we’re still Ramadan Muslims) then well…I’ll leave you to think about the rest…
 
So, lets start up the qiyam, quran, the sadaqa, the smiling at your fellow Muslim and the hundreds of other good deeds again, because I don’t know about you but I sure want Allah to be pleased with me 365 days of the year and not just thirty!
 
Take care
Wsm
Umm Raiyaan

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