By Fiza Khan
Today was one of those days when I really….I mean reallyyyy….felt drained out by fasting.
As I walked back home from the bus stop, in the peak heat of noon, all I could think of was, ‘Water. Water. Water.’
As I came closer to home, I heard myself saying ‘Alhamdulillah’ out loud.
‘For the heat?’ I asked myself.
‘No, no, for the means that await so close by! For being blessed to have the blessing, even if it was delayed for a time, and for being reminded of all His favours which I was failing to recognize!’
Today was one of those days when, as your throat stings with dryness, you plead to Allah for a drink at Hawd-e-Kauthar*, after which there will be no more thirst, ever. Ah, I thought, I love making this dua with sincerity each Ramadan, the kind of sincerity that doesn’t come otherwise.
As I cooled off, hours before iftaar, I wondered would I have ever thanked Him for this simple yet immense blessing had it not been for the little difficulty I felt today? Would I have realized how needy I am for the deeds that will help me make my way to the Hawd-e-Kauthar on a day that will be immeasurably more hotter than today? Would I have thought twice about my responsibility towards those who don’t get access to water at a distance of a few miles from me, and then turned off the tap upon realization before I wanted to, because it wasn’t only mine to use excessively?
If Allah did not send us reminders to jolt us back into realization from straying into daily illusions of this worldly life, how would we ever save ourselves? What a kind Rabb that He places such benefit in every little difficulty, Ya Rahman!
The Kind Rabb who rewards even for as much as the prick of a thorn (Bukhari 5641), who multiplies each good deed between 10 to 700 (Bukhari 7062) and when you and I go without food and drink all day, He exceeds it beyond any given standard and says “fasting is for me and I shall reward for it” (Bukhari 1761). Yes, He knows the effort and the struggle that we go through!
What a pity that we waste these precious moments of rewards and reminder in jest and complaint!
Let’s take it up as a challenge this month, or week or even a single day to find the goodness in everything that comes our way!
Let’s not throw a tantrum next time a desired item is missing from the iftaar menu, for it may give us a chance to try something new!
Let’s not distract ourselves from the thoughts of hunger with videos and memes, but utilize those moments of weakness for heartfelt duas and gratitude for what we have all year round.
Let’s accept the weather for how it is, realizing that it is causing for our rewards of this month a much needed increase.
Let’s come up with better questions to ask each other this Ramadan than “Roza lag raha hai?” Let’s smile wide in the face of the one who asks us this and tell them “ji bohot acha lag raha hai, Alhamdolillah!” (P.S. If you can come up with a better reply, leave it for us too in the comments below!)
Let’s actively seek, when struck with hardship, the promised ease!
*Hawd-e-Kauthar: It is a great cistern – a tank for holding water – which will be set up in the place of gathering on the Day of Resurrection, to which the ummah of Muhammad ﷺ will come. The water of this cistern will come from the river of al-Kawthar which is in Paradise, hence it is called the Cistern of al-Kawthar.
“…Its water is whiter than milk and its scent is better than musk. Its drinking vessels are like the stars of the sky and whoever drinks from it will never thirst again.”
Read details here.