بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ
In the name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful.
Alhamdulillah was Salatu Wassalamu ‘ala Rasulullah.
All praise is due to Allah (SWT) and may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon His Prophet Muhammad ﷺ
Allah (SWT) says in the Quran:
وَلَا تَهِنُوا وَلَا تَحْزَنُوا وَأَنتُمُ الْأَعْلَوْنَ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ
Wala tahinoo wala tahzanoo waantumu alaAAlawna in kuntum mumineena
So do not weaken and do not grieve, and you will be superior if you are [true] believers.
(Surah Ali’ Imran, Quran 3:139)
Allah (SWT) says, don’t lose hope and don’t be sad, that you will be victorious if you are believers, if you are truly believers.
And at this moment in time, many of us are probably aware that our brothers and sisters In Palestine are going through a lot of pain, and they don’t have food, or water, or safety, or security, or shelter.
They have had to leave their homes. Over a million people have had to leave their homes to protect themselves, but even leaving it is not enough. And they still do not have protection. And we are over here, thousands of miles away, and we have food, and we have water, and we have shelter, and we have safety, and we have security, and we’re not worried that tomorrow, something is going to happen to our parents, that something is going to happen to our family. We’re not worried, like they are worried.
As Muslims, what do we do with this information? One of the parents I was talking to told me that he wanted to purchase some technology for his home. And one of his kids said, “Oh, let’s get this one.” The one that the child recommended costed $200 more than the bare minimum technology. The father was an immigrant and the father said if I was back home where I come from that $200 can feed a family for a month. And so the father was feeling guilty that “I’m over here and I live in abundance. And the people I left behind, they live in scarcity. The people I left behind, they are living in scarcity.”
And so as Muslims, what can we do about this?
- What is our obligation?
- Do we as Muslims, do we feel guilty about our privilege?
- What is it that we can do to deal with privilege?
- How do we deal with having abundance, having lots of things and having things that other people do not have?
Allah (SWT) tells us in the Qur’an that, just because you have many blessings does not mean that Allah loves you. And if you have nothing, it doesn’t mean that Allah is punishing you.
But what Allah tells us is if you have lots of blessings, then your obligation or your job is to be grateful.
So, what can we do about our brothers and sisters in Palestine? What we should do is use these blessings.
Using Our Blessings
And number one, we have to be grateful to Allah.
How can we be grateful to Allah? How can we show our gratitude?
1. We have to use our blessings wisely, and not be wasteful. So when it’s time for dinner, when it’s time to eat, we should only get what we will eat, and we should not waste more than that. Whatever we have, we should try to not be wasteful. That is one way in being grateful.
2. What’s another way to be grateful? Another way to be grateful is to establish prayer in our home, to pray our Salah as a family. This is another way of showing Allah our gratitude.
3. Thirdly, we should give in charity. We should say as a family, we’re going to support our brothers and sisters in Palestine who are suffering from war and from crisis and from oppression and from injustice. We’re going to help them as a family. This is what we’re going to do.
4. Another way to be grateful is to use our voice. As children, you don’t have money of your own. Everything you have is what your parents have. But what you can do is you can write something. You can write something and send it to your local politician, your congressman. You can write something, send it to the president. You can write something and send it to your brothers and sisters in Palestine. You can make a video. You can make a video to send as a message to your brothers and sisters. Supporting your brothers and sisters. There’s many different things that you can do.
Helping Against Injustice
And it’s important for you to think about what is it that you can do for your brothers and sisters. And that is a form of gratitude to Allah, and it’s a form of helping against injustice.
What is injustice? Injustice is when someone does something to you, and that is unfair. When someone hurts you, when someone causes you pain, when someone does something unfair to you, that is injustice.
And so as Muslims, our obligation, Allah wants us to stand for justice. In our own lives, if we see someone hurting someone else, as a Muslim, we have to say, “don’t hurt them.” If we see someone at school insulting someone else, calling them a name, we have to be the one to stand up and say, “don’t do that. Don’t be mean. Don’t be a bully.” As a Muslim, it’s our job to stop the bully. It’s our job to bring in the teacher. Do what’s necessary to stop the bullying. That’s something that we as Muslims do. We stand up for those that are suffering. Whether they are Muslim, whether they are not Muslim.
That’s important for us as Muslims. That’s something which Allah (SWT) commands us to do. And that is a form of gratitude. That whatever power we have, we try to use it for good.
We don’t say, well, “I just want to care about myself and that’s it.” That is not what the Muslim does. The Muslim does not say, “I only care about myself and nobody else.”
But the Muslim, if the Muslim sees injustice, the Muslim tries to stop injustice. Whatever it might be- around us or far away.
So it’s important, my young brothers and sisters, that we think about how can we be grateful to Allah (SWT) for the blessings that we have. In part of that gratitude, how can we support our brothers and sisters that may be in pain all around the world and especially at this time in Gaza and Palestine? And so we ask Allah (SWT) that He helps us to be strong and to be brave and that He gives them strength that they need during this difficult time. Ameen.
أقول قولي هذا وأستغفر الله لي ولكم ولسائر المسلمين فَاسْتَغْفِرُوهُ إِنَّهُ هُوَ الغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ
I say what you have heard and I seek forgiveness from Allah for me and you from every sin.
We are One Ummah
The Prophet ﷺ told us that- all of the Muslims, all together, are like one body. And if any part of your body is in pain, then the whole body is pain. Imagine if you have a toothache, or you have a headache, or you get sick with a cough. Now you’re in bed. Is it your whole body that has pain? No, it’s just your throat, or your tooth, or your head. But now your whole body is in bed. It feels like everything is in pain, even if it’s just one part. That is the example the Prophet Muhammad gave about the Muslims. He said when one part of the Muslims is in pain, then the rest of us are also in pain.
We try to feel that. We empathize with that. We can’t rest until we do something to help our brothers and sisters in whatever way that we can, in whatever way that is possible for us. That is something which the Prophet ﷺ introduced to us as the concept of ummah. And ummah means one community, one nation.
So all of us are part of one ummah. The beautiful thing when people come to our masjid here, and they see all different kinds of people, all kinds of languages, from all kinds of countries. That doesn’t exist anywhere else. You go anywhere else, it’ll be all one type of people.
It’ll all be one type of people. Maybe a little bit of diversity. But not every single form of diversity. SubhanAllah. And that is the beauty of our religion. That we’re open to everyone. And that anyone can be Muslim. Anyone can believe. So it’s important during these times that we have that unity, that we have that unity for justice among Muslims as well as from non Muslims.
There are many non Muslims who want justice in Palestine, who want the people of Palestine to have peace and to have prosperity and to have the blessings that we have, to have access to what we have access to. There’s many non Muslims who also want that. So, this is not only a Muslim issue, this is a humanity issue.
This is an issue of, how can we have peace in our world? How can we have prosperity in our world? And so what can we do? I talked about some of the things that we can do.
Making Du’a to Allah
Another thing that we can do is to make dua to Allah, “oh Allah, help our brothers and sisters. Oh Allah, grant them strength.”
We can pray our salah as a family, and as a family together, we can make dua to Allah. And that’s a beautiful thing that when you pray your salah to Allah as a form of gratitude, and then you make dua to Allah, that is the most powerful dua. The dua that you make after your salah. After you complete some good deed.
Ibrahim (as) and Ismail (as), father and son, together they did what? They built the Ka’bah. The Ka’bah that we know in Makkah in Saudi Arabia today, they built it. The Prophet Ibrahim (as) and his son, the Prophet Ismail (as), they built it together. And after that, they made dua to Allah. They said, “Rabbana taqabbal minna.” They said, “O Allah, accept this deed from us. Oh Allah, forgive us for our mistake. Oh Allah, the people that come after us, Ya Allah, make them believers and make them righteous.” So they made du’a after they built the Ka’bah. So when we do a good deed, we make du’a to Allah.
We pray our salah as a family, we make du’a to Allah for our brothers and sisters in Palestine. This prayer and the good deeds I receive from this prayer, I want to dedicate to my brothers and sisters in Palestine. By asking,
“Ya Allah grant them strength. Ya Allah grant them bravery and courage to face what they are facing. Ya Allah alleviate their suffering. Ya Allah alleviate their oppression. Ya Allah make it easy for them.”
Make dua for our brothers and sisters in Afghanistan who suffered terrible earthquakes, “Ya Allah make it easy for them. Ya Allah grant healing to those that are injured and wounded. Ya Allah have mercy on those that have passed away. Ya Allah give them the highest levels of paradise.” This is the kind of dua that you can make after your salah with your family.
1. So make dua, number one.
2. Number two, be grateful to Allah by establishing your prayers, by giving in charity.
3. Number three, write letters, emails, whatever it might be. And write to the president, to your representatives, your politicians, your elected officials, to the children in Gaza, write to them. Find a way to write to them and send your letters. They will appreciate it.
Subhanallah. I saw a video of a young girl in Palestine. And she was saying, “where are the Muslims? Where are the Muslims to help me?” And so we want to help that girl. We want to give her our words of support. We want to say, “we know your situation. We’re thinking of you. We’re making dua for you. You are not alone.” Because I imagine she’s feeling alone. She and her friends are feeling alone, Subhanallah. They’re feeling forgotten. They’re feeling like no one cares. And so how can we as Muslims show that we care? How can we put pen to paper? And how can we make that work?
So we ask Allah (SWT) that He helps us be grateful. We ask Allah (SWT) that He helps us to appreciate our blessings. We ask Allah (SWT) that He helps us to feel the pain that our brothers and sisters are feeling. To help them in whatever way we can with our words, with our actions, with our money, with whatever we can do for them. We ask Allah (SWT) that He helps us to follow the way of our beloved Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. Ameen Ya Rabbul Alameen.
سُبْحَانَ رَبِّكَ رَبِّ الْعِزَّةِ عَمَّا يَصِفُونَ
وَسَلَامٌ عَلَى الْمُرْسَلِينَ
وَالْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ
Subhana rabbika rabbi alAAizzati AAamma yasifoona Wasalamun AAala almursaleena Waalhamdu lillahi rabbi alAAalameena
Exalted is your Lord, the Lord of might, above what they describe. And peace upon the messengers. And praise to Allah, Lord of the worlds.
(Surah As-Saffat, Quran 37:180-182)
And, establish the prayer.
Please share your reflections and du’as for our brothers and sisters below!