The holy month of fasting is upon us, and it’s time we finally prepare for the spiritual recharge that awaits, God-willing. Pray a little more, read additional pages of Qur’an, and make extra dhikr to welcome Ramadan. Let’s tear out a sheet of paper from a notebook, grab a pencil, and write a du’a list. (Don’t use a notes application on a phone, because when we’re looking back on the list during actual supplication, we want to avoid distracting notifications.)
This month is the greatest of them all, and it’s the prime opportunity to reconnect with Allah. I saw this video the other day…and it’s quite the eye-opener.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHGcmOumlxM]
Regret is a horrible feeling, even when not experienced on your deathbed. Let’s try to avoid that heavy regret at the end of Ramadan when we usually ask ourselves, “Why didn’t I do more?” Your du’a list can help you organize your thoughts and ensure you don’t miss anything. You prepare for an interview right? So why not prepare for a conversation with God? Allah showers His blessings upon the world in this month, so don’t be shy in asking for His forgiveness, mercy, and help. Your list will be between you and Allah, and there’s no need to keep those lips zipped at night when our Lord wants us to call upon Him.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZVEydn3RKk]
“And when My servants ask you, [O Muhammad], concerning Me—indeed I am near. I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls upon Me. So let them respond to Me [by obedience] and believe in Me that they may be [rightly] guided.” (Qur’an 02:186)
Mental notes and general supplications are all good, and you should definitely pour your heart out with whatever is in it. But in addition to that, I find writing specific things can really help you reflect.
When Compiling Your Du’a List, Remember…
- Repentance: A narration of the Prophet (may the blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) says, “All children of Adam are sinners, and the best of sinners are those who repent.” Beg Allah for His forgiveness for any and all sins. Remember specific ones? Cite them in your du’a. Take a look at this picture below from Lift Me Up, and really let the words sink in.
- The deceased, sick, and suffering: Ask Allah to forgive the sins and grant light in the graves of your brothers and sisters passed. If you have relatives or friends who’ve left this world, remember their names. Make your du’a specific, and do not rush. Pray for the sick people you know and don’t know. Write down names of countries in which people are hungry, thirsty, and mistreated by their governments and opposing powers. Remember their tears—we are one Ummah and we need to care for one another.
- Your blessings: As much as we need to ask Allah for things, we cannot forget what He gave us already. Jot down everything you’re thankful for on your du’a list—and I mean everything. Sight, water, home, shoes…SubhanAllah. We’ll need to rip out a few more sheets of notebook paper. It’ll never be enough though…
“And if you should count the favors of Allah , you could not enumerate them. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” (Qur’an 16:18)