A beautiful connection dawned upon me during my Tafseer class.
Long ago, when we did the Tafseer of Surah Al-Fatihah, we connected it to a verse in Surah An-Nisa’. The verse ‘Siratallatheena an’amta alaihim’, is explained as ‘The path of those whom you have bestowed your blessings upon’. It is said that ‘An’amta alaihim’ (those who were bestowed blessings by the Almighty) are spoken about in verse 69 of Surah An-Nisa.
وَمَن يُطِعِ اللَّهَ وَالرَّسُولَ فَأُولَٰئِكَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِم مِّنَ النَّبِيِّينَ وَالصِّدِّيقِينَ وَالشُّهَدَاءِ وَالصَّالِحِينَ وَحَسُنَ أُولَٰئِكَ رَفِيقًا
“And whoever obeys Allah and the Apostle, these are with those upon whom Allah has bestowed favors from among the prophets and the truthful and the martyrs and the good, and a goodly company are they” [Surah An-Nisa’:69]
Clearly, those whom Allah has bestowed favours upon, are the Prophets, the Siddiqeen (absolutely true in their faith), the Martyrs, and the Saliheen (those who do righteous deeds). Those who obey Allah SWT and the Messenger صلى اللّٰه عليه وسلم would be admitted in their company, and what an excellent companionship would that be!
The context of this verse comes from a few verses above where Allah swears by Himself that people will never be TRUE believers, unless they appoint the Prophet صلى اللّٰه عليه وسلم as their judge to settle affairs and not just do it externally, but “wholeheartedly” accept it in their hearts as well.
فَلَا وَرَبِّكَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ حَتَّىٰ يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيْنَهُمْ ثُمَّ لَا يَجِدُوا فِي أَنفُسِهِمْ حَرَجًا مِّمَّا قَضَيْتَ وَيُسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا
But no! By your Lord! They do not believe (in reality) until they make you a judge of that which has become a matter of disagreement among them, and then do not find any straitness in their hearts as to what you have decided and submit with entire submission. [Surah An-Nisa:65]
SubhanAllah! How many a times have we yearned for something but had to do something else “just for the sake of Allah”? We do it, but in our hearts we may not have completely been happy about it because we desired something else. Nevertheless, we do it anyway.
Allah, Al-‘Aleem, knows what’s even in the heart! And what follows much more beautifully after that? He acknowledges it with rewards upon rewards.
Allah says if we still did it, if we still tried and made our hearts accept it ‘for the sake of Allah’, and in that moment of desire obeyed Allah and the Messenger صلى اللّٰه عليه وسلم, then that ‘would be much good for us’. [An-Nisa: 65] And not only that. ‘He would give us a GREAT reward’ [An-Nisa: 67] and again, not only that! He said He would then ‘guide us to the straight path!’ [An-Nisa: 68] And THEN! He says, ‘They will be in the company of those Allah has blessed’ and what an excellent companionship would that be!’ [An-Nisa: 69]
For that ONE sin you simply gave up for His sake, for that ONE moment of patience you held on to for His sake, for that ONE act of Sunnah you did even when your limbs were lazy, for that ONE moment when you told your heart “let’s just do it”, Allah gives back how many more times?
1) Grant us much good in it.
2) A great reward.
3) Guide us to the straight path.
4) Grant us excellent EXCELLENT companionship!
For that one deed. One moment. One second of obedience.
And how amazing is this! Every time we push ourselves to do something good, even if little, it means He grants us ‘guidance to the straight path’. Which means the path to doing more good is opened for us. Isn’t that just so amazingly beautiful?
When you find it hard to be patient with someone even when you may be on the right, when you struggle with temptations, be it that non-halal relationship or that non-halal restaurant, when you’re struggling to achieve something but have a lot of issues, remember to focus on the good you do. Do it with a bit more of excellence. A bit more wholeheartedly, ‘for the sake of Allah’ and let it open the knots of hardship for you and ease it like a breeze.
Maybe, just maybe, you and your heart does this ONE thing wholeheartedly for the sake of Allah and that’s sufficient, because of His promise in these verses. Maybe that ONE thing is going to lead you to gilded mountains.
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