Worshipping & Sinning
My intention in writing this post is not to offend you neither is it to critisize or pass blind judgements. But rather, I hope to inform you of a misunderstanding that we have adopted with how we practice Islam.
It is indeed very true that we pray and hope to become amongst the pious and accepted servants of Allah (swt). However I ask you, what course of action are we actually taking for this?
We go to the mosques or at home pray our daily Salaahs, Alhamdulilah may Allah (swt) reward us for this deed.
When the Month of Ramadhan comes, we fast with sincerity, Alhamdulilah may Allah (swt) reward this deed also.
We desire and when given the means, we endure every form of hardship and perform Hajj, Alhamdulilah, may Allah (swt) reward this deed too.
Occasionally, we recite the Quran, we do Dhikr, May each of these deeds be accepted by Allah (swt)
However, we do not realize that just as it is important to perform Ibaadah (worship) of Allah (swt) it is equally important to stay away from sin.
Let me give an analogy to explain to you, the severity of not avoiding sin.
If an individual desires to enter a garden but the gate of the garden is preventing him from doing so, then he will have to seek the key for the gate of the garden, and once it is open, he will be able to enter in with ease.
Similarly, one can assume that a gate exists between a servant and his Lord. If the gate is open then the servant can easily attain the nearness and acceptance of his Allah (swt). If the gate is closed, he shall be void of receiving Allah (swt)'s nearness and acceptance.
This gate represents an individual's sinning. If one exerts himself to eradicate sin from him then this gate is wide open and the path to reach his Lord has now been eased.
Likewise, the individual who continues with his sinning, who does not keep his gaze down, does not avoid intermingling in person or on the internet, who does not save himself from listening to music, who is involved in watching improper films and shows, who backbites and slanders, involved in every other kind of sin, then know that this gate that reaches you to Allah (swt) Who is always waiting to forgive our sins and soothe our sorrows is closed.
If your death was to come when the gate of Mercy was closed, what would be the consequence?
Shaytaan has succeeded in fooling us into thinking that as long as we are performing our worship we are counted as Allah (swt)'s accepted servants. How can Allah (swt) accept us when we continue to disobey him by sinning and make no intention of instantly repenting and refraining from the sin? When will we remove such folly from our minds?
I will end by giving you an example given by a respected Shaikh.
On the one hand there is an old man who is travelling and is telling all his companions to perform Dhikr (remembrance of Allah swt) and is involved in such Dhikr himself. However, this man is not keeping his gaze down, but sinning by looking at women passing by.
On the other hand, there is a young gentleman who is involved in no such Dhikr and neither is he telling anyone to do Dhikr, however, when women pass him by he ensures that he does not look at them even though he is desperately inclined to do so.
This act of suppressing his unlawful desire of gazing at the women has earned him a very high status.
Know, that the latter even though he was not involved in any form of optional Ibaadah (worship) is far far greater and superior in rank than the former individual.
Moreover, the former individual has gained nothing through his optional worship because he disobeyed Allah (swt)'s command.
If we are still involved in sins then let us not become dissapointed or lose hope. This is because Allah (swt) will accept our repentance. Our task is to repent, with sincerity, and make a firm intention that I shall not do such a sin again.
The respected Shaikh states that by holding on firm to our obligatory duties like praying daily salaah etc. Aswell as staying away from sins, one becomes a very dear and loved servant of his Lord.
Oh Allah (swt) forgive our past sins and save us from committing any more sins in the future. Oh Allah (swt) help us to perform our obligatory duties to the best of our ability and forgive our shortcomings. Oh Allah (swt) make us Your close, accepted servants. Oh Allah (swt) when the angel of Death comes to take our souls, ease our pain and call us towards You like a dear friend calls another.