What is very important for us to know is when we develop a relationship with Allah, when we are conscious of Allah subhanahu wata’ala allah will grant us the ability to distinguish between right and wrong through that ability we will achieve contentment.
O you who have believed, if you fear Allah, He will grant you a criterion and will remove from you your misdeeds and forgive you. And Allah is the possessor of great bounty. (8:29)
In a month of fasting, the month of Ramadan, we are asked by Allah Subhanahu WA Ta’ala to fast in order to develop that relationship with Allah. Fasting brings about compassion, brings about a closeness to Allah, a softness; it disciplines us, strive to develop your relationship with Allah, strive when it comes to your prayer, when it comes to your charity the giving, when it comes to your character and conduct and Allah subhanahu wata’ala will definitely open your doors.
The importance of seeking forgiveness of Allah is such that even if the punishment were to be coming in your direction it will be diverted because of you seeking the forgiveness of Allah. This is why it’s very important to keep seeking the forgiveness of Allah on a daily basis. People wonder I’m going through problems, is it a punishment or is it actually a test from Allah?
Well if you are seeking the forgiveness of Allah at all times every day it can never be the punishment of Allah, do you know why? Because Allah says
But Allah would not punish them while you, [O Muhammad], are among them, and Allah would not punish them while they seek forgiveness. (8:33)
While seeking forgiveness, it’s impossible that what’s coming to you in terms of negativity is a punishment from Allah. It is only a test, you must relax, and you must be satisfied and content. Keep on building your relationship with Allah and understand whatever you’re going through is in order to elevate your status.
In Surat Anfal Allah Subhanahu WA Ta’ala also makes mention of the gifts that he bestows upon man and the fact that He doesn’t take them away until man deserves that they be taken away.
If you haven’t been become a bad person and still you lose something good you might have had that would not be a punishment of Allah, that would actually be a bigger gift in the long term from Allah Subhanahu WA Ta’ala.
That is because Allah would not change a favor which He had bestowed upon a people until they change what is within themselves. And indeed, Allah is Hearing and Knowing. (8:53)
Get acquainted with Allah during your days of ease and Allah will get acquainted with you during your days of hardship.
Allah speaks in surah al-anfal also about a situation where there are two parties that are fighting each other perhaps a war on a larger scale or an argument on a smaller scale Allah Subhanahu WA Ta’ala says
And if they incline to peace, then incline to it [also] and rely upon Allah . Indeed, it is He who is the Hearing, the Knowing. (8:61)
Two warring factions, one of them desperately wants peace with you, you doubt their intentions. There is nothing glaring to prove that they are being insincere. If there was something glaring to prove that they were insincere you would be foolish to make peace with them in a way that you were bitten again from the same direction. But if there is nothing to say that they were being insincere. Allah says inclined towards it. If they stretch their arm, seeking peace you should do the same.
Allah says lay your trust on Allah because you may not know exactly they may want to cheat you and that’s why in the very next verse when Allah says at the end of this verse that He is all-powerful and He is all-knowing, He’s all wise
But if they intend to deceive you – then sufficient for you is Allah. It is He who supported you with His help and with the believers. (8:62)
Very importantly learn to please Allah in all that you do and learn to follow Allah in all that you would like to do and Allah will grant you that success in the dunya and akhira filled with the greatest contentment – Mufti Menk