by Amir Sulaiman
In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Whosoever would like to make a living by being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him. It is enough for us to use all of our living days thanking Allah for Islam and it would be insufficient.
Rather we could spend all of our living days thanking Allah only for salat and on our deathbeds we would find ourselves coming up short. Even for the knowledge and ability to make one prostration we could spend our every waking hour thanking Allah for that prostration and we would still die in debt.
Do not allow yourself to forget that there are some from the Children of Adam (as) who have never made one prostration to their Lord. Neither they nor their parents or their parent’s parents as far as they can trace their lineage, have ever prostrated even once before their Creator. What is worse is that, for some of them, their children and their children’s children until the Day of Judgment will never make one prostration to Allah, Most High. They will never taste the sweetness of this perfected mode of worship. How blessed are the prostrators?! So whosoever among us prostrators who would like to make a living being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him.
Do not allow yourself to forget that while we are sending up the foul smoke of our sins , in turn, Allah sends down the sweet mist of his blessings to cover the believer and disbeliever, the righteous and the wicked, the grateful and the ingrates alike. Have you not seen the life-giving rain falling upon the oppressed and the oppressor, the holy and the foul, the guided and the astray alike?
Have you not seen the fruit growing amidst the sincere and the hypocrites, the patient and the impatient, the just and the tyrants alike? One group exceeds the other group only by way of their degree of gratitude. However are there any amongst us who are truly grateful? And We have distributed the (water) amongst them, in order that they may celebrate (our) praises, but most men are averse (to aught) but (rank) ingratitude (25:50)
So, whosoever would like to make a living by being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him. How much gratitude do we owe even for one verse of Qur’an, In the Name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful(1:1)? How many days of thanks should we spend for this verse let alone the six other verses that follow it or the other 113 surahs that follow them? What a mercy it is that Allah even turned His face and spoke to us. The Lord of all the worlds, the Master of the Day of Judgment, glorified is He, has revealed something of Himself to us when we are but mud turned to blood, bones, and bowels. And what has He revealed about Himself except that He is Most Gracious and Most Merciful. Glory be to Allah and mercy be on those who glorify Him. And We have explained to man, in this Qur’an, every kind of similitude: yet the greater part of men refuse (to receive it) except with ingratitude (17:89)
Oh you grateful ones, do not allow yourself to forget that even the knowledge and ability to be grateful is but a gift from Allah. Know that there are some from the Children of Adam (as) that do not have the knowledge or desire to thank Allah. What is worse is that neither their parents nor their children as far as the eye can see have been grateful to their Creator and Sustainer. So not only are we to thank Allah for His blessings but also thank Him for teaching us to thank Him for there are some who do not know or do not care. So we must thank Him for showing us how to thank Him. Then we must thank Him for giving us the insight to thank Him for instilling in us the desire to thank Him. Then we are indebted to Him for allowing us the thanks of that thanks which is thanks for the orginal thanks and so on and on until the day when the mountains will pass like clouds and the sky will be like molten brass and the Angels of the Garden and the Angels of the Fire will stand ready awaiting the command of their Lord.
So, whosoever would like to make a living by being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him. Do not be neglectful of this labour for it is a good labour the fruits of which multiply exponentially. And remember! your Lord caused to be declared (publicly): “If ye are grateful, I will add more (favours) unto you (14:7). Out of Allah’s Grace and Mercy, He has decreed that our gratitude will increase His favours upon us , which in turn, will make us more grateful, which will increase His favours, making us more grateful, which will increase His favours and this pattern goes on and on until the Horn is sounded and the dead are raised to settle all accounts. So this long labour is a sweet and blessed labour and no labour has a greater profit margin than the labour of gratitude.
Is it enough to make your heart swell in your chest and tears to swell in your eyes to know that after all of this Allah calls Himself Al Shakur, The Grateful? How is Allah grateful to this newly created race of ingrates called humankind? How kind is He; how Merciful is He to show gratitude to a creation sprung from dirt, reproduced via a despised fluid and returns to the dirt as food for maggots. How forbearing is He to show gratitude while most of mankind is wandering the Earth neglectful of his duty to their Lord. We are not justly grateful yet our service to Him is always justly rewarded . No, rather the reward for our service is generously multiplied many times over while our wrong actions are counted only once if they are not wiped away as if they never happened. Who amongst us is truly grateful to The Grateful? May Allah have mercy upon us all.
What is certain is that there is nothing worthy of worship besides Allah, Most High. What is certain is that Muhammad is his servant and messenger, may peace and blessings be upon him, his family, and all those who follow them. What is certain is that all praise is for Allah, Lord of all the worlds.
We bestowed (in the past) Wisdom on Luqman: “Show (thy) gratitude to Allah.” Any who is (so) grateful does so to the profit of his own soul: but if any is ungrateful, verily Allah is free of all wants, Worthy of all praise. (31:12)
The Messiah once prayed, “O my Lord, how can I be thankful for the many blessings you have bestowed upon me, when the ability to thank You is, in itself, a blessing- for which I must render thanks?” God answered saying, “That you know this is thanks enough.”