Islamic Religious Council of Singapore
27 September 2019 / 27 Muharram 1441H
Making A Positive Impact
Blessed Friday congregation,
Let us increase our taqwa in Allah s.w.t. by obeying His commands and avoiding His prohibitions. May Allah grant us enlightenment and His divine guidance. Insya Allah, amin.
Throughout the month, this mimbar has discussed the different stages of a person’s life and provided tips and suggestions on how best to go through each stage. From nurturing and educating the youth, to caring for the elderly – all of which teaches us to appreciate and understand the meaning of life that Allah has given us.
Our existence in this world is a precious gift from Allah, and as such, it is our obligation to show gratitude for the innumerable blessings we have received. Among these blessings, longevity and health are perhaps the greatest and most valuable to us. These two blessings allow us to contribute, effect change and make an impact in this world, while simultaneously increasing our rewards in the hereafter.
Let us ponder upon a verse of the Quran in which Allah s.w.t. affirms the importance of contributing and leaving our mark in this world.
Meaning: “Indeed, it is We who bring the dead to life and record what they have put forth and what they left behind, and all things We have enumerated in a clear register.” [Surah Yasin: 12].
Allah s.w.t. explains in this verse that every deed and every effort we make in this life is recorded. It also encourages us to constantly consider the ways through which we can contribute and leave a positive impact on those around us.
In addition, various hadiths supporting this verse talk about the virtues of those who have left such a positive impact that they become a role model to others even after their passing. The Prophet s.a.w. says:
Which means: "Whosoever introduces a good practice in Islam, there is for him its reward and the reward of those who act upon it after him without anything being diminished from their rewards. And whosoever introduces an evil practice in Islam, will shoulder its sin and the sins of all those who will act upon it, without diminishing in any way their burden" [Hadith narrated by Imam Muslim].
This hadith prescribes for each of us to strive to the best of our ability to be of the first category of people mentioned in the hadith. These are the people who make a difference and become a role model to those around them. People emulate them, and are positively inspired and affected by them.
My brothers, let us also examine the life of our beloved Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. and how he lived with his companions. Their lives were filled with positive contributions to the ummah. The Prophet s.a.w. is commemorated in the Sirah not only as a man with exceptional morals, but also as a man who passionately served the ummah and was a catalyst of change within his community.
An example of this can be observed in the building of a mosque as soon as the Prophet s.a.w. migrated to the city of Madinah. In addition to being a place of worship and spiritual development, it was also a place where he would hear and resolve disputes and complaints among the people of Madinah.
The Prophet’s contributions towards his community encompassed different aspects of their lives, such as the social and economic aspects. This is done by introducing a social justice system like the collection and disbursement of Zakat, and the introduction of Baitul Mal, which was a reserve for the treasury of Madinah during that time.
This beautiful trait of the Prophet s.a.w. was inherited by his companions after him. Anyone who performs hajj or umrah is sure to witness the legacy they left behind, such as the waqaf property left behind by Sayyidina Uthman Ibn Affan, which to this day continues to help those in need.
Subhanallah! This exemplifies the meaning of the verse recited at the beginning of this khutbah regarding leaving a positive impact.
As the ummah of the Prophet s.a.w., we must strive to emulate him and his sunnah in every aspect of our lives. Let us strive to contribute to our communities like he did by fostering a culture of giving and bringing benefit for the people around us.
Imagine, my brothers, if today were to be our last day on this earth – what deeds or efforts have we prepared that we can show on the Day of Judgement? Know that Allah s.w.t. does not look at the quantity of our efforts, but the sincerity of our intentions behind them.
Perhaps you are a teacher who has taught generation upon generation of students who then become university graduates and are now giving back to the community. This is the impact you have made. Perhaps you are a parent or grandparent who has raised and nurtured your children or grandchildren such that they inherit the best of morals and values. This is the result of the valuable impact you have made upon them. Perhaps, you are an employee who strives to give your best in ensuring the well-being of others through your services. This too, would have a positive impact of those around you.
The analogy given by the Prophet s.a.w. in a hadith regarding the qualities of a believer accurately depicts his efforts and the benefit he yields for those around him. The Prophet said: “The example of the believer is like the example of the date palm (tree); whatever you take from it will benefit you.” (At-Thabari).
Therefore, a believer does not only benefit from others or wait for others to benefit him, rather, he strives to be shining beacon of positivity and peace for all of humankind.
We ask Allah to grant us His taufiq and inayah to increase our good deeds, and may He bestow us with His grace and forgiveness always. Amin Ya Rabbal ‘Alamin.