As we finish up the second ten days of Ramadan, the days of forgiveness, I stop to ponder – what are some different things I can do to attain Allah’s forgiveness?
The Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, said: “The believer’s shade on the Day of Resurrection will be his charity.”
How simple is that – give in charity sincerely and Allah will forgive you and protect you.
There are many ways to give in charity, giving half a date or a smile to another brother/sister will work, but I believe the real test is when we try to give from our wallets.
As college students, we like to give ourselves the easy way out and say that we are not able to attend fundraising dinners or contribute financially to help others – but is it really that difficult for us to donate about $10 a month to, let’s say, the oppressed in Burma/Myanmar?
Sure, we aren’t the ones at the dinners who are able to raise their hands and generously donate $1,000, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t help at all, right?
Some practical ways to get oneself to give regularly, in order to bless our wealth but also to have another opportunity to attain Allah’s forgiveness (something that we all need very much) are:
Create a Sadaqah (donation) jar at home
Recently I attended a qiyam where Shaykha Muslema Purmul, a recent graduate from Al-Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt and the Education and Executive Director of Muslim American Society – Greater Los Angeles Chapter, mentioned that every family should have a Sadaqah Jar in their household. Basically, every time one does something wrong, they should follow it up by putting some money in the Sadaqah Jar. Then, once it is full, they should donate it off.
Set up a monthly donation with your favorite organization
Setting aside a small amount every month, such as ten dollars, is very easy to do. As a student, we all understand the expenses of college, so why not try and help other students out with our money? Organizations such as the Islamic Scholarship Fund or Zaytuna College might be something you want to look into. Or, maybe you want to help our brothers and sisters suffering in areas such as Syria or Palestine – why not look into setting up a monthly donation with Islamic Relief? There are so many trusted organizations out there helping out those in need that we have no excuse to say that we don’t know where to send our money to.
Next time you extend your hand out to put a couple of bills into the donation box, just think about all the sins washing away from you. Keeping this in mind should make it easier for us to give, during and after this blessed month of Ramadan.