Ramadan is an important month in the Islamic calendar. It is a month of mandatory fasting “Fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may attain taqwaa.” (Quran, 2:183) Fasting in this month is one of the articles of Islam.
The Reward for Ramadan is unknown to human “(Allah ﷻ said), ‘Every good deed of Adam’s son is for him except fasting; it is for Me. and I shall reward (the fasting person) for it.’ Verily, the smell of the mouth of a fasting person is better to Allah than the smell of musk.” (Bukhari)
You might be reading this and wondering why the topic Ramadan Prep as we are not nearing the month of Shaban. Answer – It was narrated from some of the Sahabas (companions) that they used to make dua (supplicate) to Almighty Allah for six (6) month that they would live to witness Ramadan and they would pray for five (5) months afterwards that He ﷻ would accept it from them. (Source Islamqa) This an act that we can revive together. No need to wait for Shaban to start preparing okay!
Straight to the discussion, how can we prepare for Ramadan?
- Make dua (supplicate) that Almighty Allah ﷻ accepts your last year’s Ramadan. Act of worship requires acceptance from Allah. Hence, the need to complete your act of worship with dua.
- Make dua that Almighty Allah ﷻ keeps you alive to witness the next Ramadan. So many people have died between last year Ramadan and now – allowing us to witness limitation in the human ability. Supplicate that Almighty Allah ﷻ increase your lifespan with the intention to do good.
- Pay off your Last year Ramadan if you are still owing.
- Make an action plan. Review your last year Ramadan and things you planned to do after Ramadan.
PUTTING THINGS INTO PRACTICE (ACTION PLAN)
- The aim is to turn good deeds into habit that you will be able to stick to and incorporate in your lifestyle.
- To do this it is recommended that you get a journal/ notebook where you write things down. By writing things down, you are more likely to follow it as you can always review it.
- Write down some actions you developed in Ramadan and why you want to incorporate them in your lifestyle. For example, if one of your actions was to pray Tahajjud (night prayer), identify whether you have committed to it and whether you have stuck to the habit post Ramadan.
- Take active steps to materialize your action. Using the example of Tahajjud above, what will you do to ensure that you are able to wake up for Taajjud? It may be by sleeping earlier, making dua that Almighty Allah ﷻ makes it possible for you to wake up, make wudu before going to bed and have the intention to wake up for Tahajjud. To avoid overwhelming yourself you may want to start by waking up once a week and gradually increase your capability as you become more consistent.
- You can pick one Barakah action and implement it in your life.
Some tasks you can complete in preparing for Ramadan.
- Write down what else you can do to prepare for Ramadan.
- After writing your to-do list then write actions to implement what you have written.
- Set some goals around improving/adding to your daily prayers that can be accomplished by the end of Ramadan. Such as praying all your nawafil prayers after Salah, reciting Qur’an before or after Salah.
- Try to supplicate often, Almighty Allah ﷻ loves to hear from us, especially in the last hours of the night. Narrated Abu Huraira (Radiallahu anhu): Allah’s Apostle ﷺ said, “Our Lord, the Blessed, the Superior, comes every night down on the nearest Heaven to us when the last third of the night remains, saying: “Is there anyone to invoke Me, so that I may respond to invocation? Is there anyone to ask Me, so that I may grant him his request? Is there anyone seeking My forgiveness, so that I may forgive him?” [Bukhari]
We should aim to be better after every Ramadan in our lives, as it comes to purify us. Cleanse us. And make us conscious of our relationship with Allah ﷻ. We should use it as an opportunity to review our lives and measure whether we have improved in an aspect of the deen as we grow. Think realistically on how Ramadan is benefitting you, rather than how you are only acting in that month!
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Till next time Fi ammanillah