Reported by Jabir bin `Abdullah (RA): The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said, "The dearest and the closest of you to me on the Day of Resurrection will be those who are the best in behaviour; and the most hateful and the farthest from me on the Day of Resurrection will be the talkative and the most pretentious and the most rhetorical.'' [At-Tirmidhi].
One can never gain quality of manner without sacrificing. The level of sacrifice varies from one to another depending on what we have in our hands – money, time, effort and comfort. A believer will sacrifice all of these because he believes Allah can give him higher than all the above.
If we can sacrifice, Allah will give us comfort even if we have nothing.
How many millionaires and businessmen are unable to sleep soundly at night? Their lives are so punctuated with stress that they cannot sleep without medication. Many of the rich and famous pressure themselves such that they develop numerous health problems and are constantly popping pills to regulate their sleeping patterns, digestion and even moods. Even with all the wealth in hand, how many millionaires, billionaires and celebrities lose hope, spiral into misery and commit suicide?
Money does not buy happiness, and the only condition in which money brings true joy if it is spent to alleviate the plight of others for the sake of Allah.
Hence when we perform a good deed sincerely for Allah, without expectation of praise from others, the rewards are boundless. The mu'min does not require praise from the people because he knows that Allah is watching and that whatever rewards lie with Him and not with His creation.
Develop the habit of showing gratitude to Allah, be patient and restrain your desires, and be patient for Him. Place His pleasure above your pleasure, and what He likes above what you like. This will generate calmness and tranquillity of the soul.
If we do the opposite, we belong to Shaitan, and we become moody, choked and irrational. If we keep Allah close, and even add to that good deeds and charity, it will protect us from all of these.
So hurry up and prioritize your good deeds before the fitnah (tribulation) descends like the pieces of the night and obscures your vision. Towards the end of time there will be much fitnah, and the cycle of iman (faith) and kufr (disbelieve) will spin so rapidly that people can wake up as believers and sleep as kuffar.
Hold firm to the rope of Allah, otherwise, our condition of iman will be like a see-saw, erratically descending and ascending. Your faith will prevent your emotions flip flopping from one extreme to the next for no reason. Lack of the stronghold to Allah is what causes us wake up happy and sleep angry, and vice versa.
In the time of choosing jobs, friends and husbands and wives, many Muslims have sold out on their deen. All for a piece of meat, some money, a passport, some pleasure, to please others. Satisfying the nafs and their unchecked emotions are above pleasing Allah and Rasulullah SAW.
What if we have the knowledge, but we are still chasing our desires? We memorize the Qur'an, but we sell out on the value extolled by that knowledge for a car or bad company. We spread the hadith but we buy 65 inch televisions for our children to plug their Xboxes in. We give a few dollars in charity, but our dwellings are filled with so many toys that we need a separate room to house them.
What if we talk too much without remembering Allah? The loose tongue will lead to a hard heart, and lead us away from Allah. It will then spread to other people.
The mu'min has a single heart, action and manner. A mu'min has one personality and a constant set of values, whether he is alone or with others. He has one aim and one goal. He knows that if he is a slave to Allah, Allah will take care of what he wants.
Today, we lack patience. We cut corners with our faith instead of applying the principles taught by Allah. We will eventually fail if we keep taking shortcuts and quick fixes. Even when obtaining religious advice, we want people to hurry and we become rude and impatient if the solution cannot be summarised in one sentence.
If we want to hurry to obtain results, then hurry for the goodness and everything else will fall into place.