All praise due to Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ for his Help and Guidance in allowing this work to be carried out. This world is meant to be hard and full of distractions. It is a test from Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ and we as Muslims, believe that “Allah will not burden a soul beyond what it can bear“(Quran 2:286). It is important to find a good balance in this life for your worldly affairs and your hereafter. Even the best of companions struggled with this and SubhanAllah who are we to be compared with the best of companions?
The life of the Prophet may peace and blessings be upon him and his companions are for us to learn how to live our lives in a well-balanced and rewarding manner for our souls in this life and the next. Hanzala Ibn Abi Amir, who earned the title of Ghaseel al-Malāʾika (غسيل الملائكة), which means the one who is cleansed by the angels, shares a beautiful hadith that shows us how our humanely desires are bound to distract us in this Dunya, so how can we deal with them? Are we still worthy of Allah’s love and mercy, even when we get distracted throughout our journey here on earth?
Hanzala Usayyidi, who was amongst the scribes of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ). reported: I met Abu Bakr. He said: Who are you? He (Hanzala) said: Hanzala has turned to be a hypocrite. He (Abu Bakr) said: Hallowed be Allah, what are you saying? Thereupon he said: I say that when we are in the company of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) we ponder over Hell-Fire and Paradise as if we are seeing them with our very eyes and when we are away from Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) we attend to our wives, our children, our business; most of these things (pertaining to After-life) slip out of our minds. Abu Bakr said: By Allah, I also experience the same. So I and Abu Bakr went to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and said to him: Allah’s Messenger, Hanzala has turned to be a hypocrite. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: What has happened to you? I said: Allah’s Messenger, when we are in your company, we are reminded of Hell-Fire and Paradise as if we are seeing them with our own eyes, but whenever we go away from you and attend to our wives, children and business, much of these things go out of our minds. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: By Him in Whose Hand is my life, if your state of mind remains the same as it is in my presence and you are always busy in remembrance (of Allah), the Angels will shake hands with you in your beds and in your paths but, Hanzala, time should be devoted (to the worldly affairs) and time (should be devoted to prayer and meditation). He (the Holy Prophet) said this thrice.Sahih Muslim 2750a
The Prophet peace be upon him advised us to spend our time in this Dunya in a balanced manner. Do not compare yourself to other Muslims and their own journey with Islam. Do not be hard on yourself and do not convince yourself that Allah will not forgive you for your mistakes. A believer has to have a firm belief in the mercy of Our Creator, The Most Merciful and All-Forgiving. When you make sincere repentance for your sins, and try your best not to go back to those mistakes, know that Allah SWT still wants you in Jannah, or else he wouldn’t have put that thought in your head to ask for forgiveness and make dua. Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim says regarding the powerful tool that is dua “If Allah did not want to accept your dua, He would have not guided you to make it (in the first place).”
When you constantly doubt yourself and your ability to do good, know that is a way from Shaytan to trick you into despair. We all sin and make mistakes, it is part of our human nature as The Prophet Peace Be Upon Him says “All of the children of Adam are sinners, and the best sinners are those who repent.” However, it is necessary to always be in a constant state of purifying your intentions (تجديد النيه ) as this will always bring blessings (بركة) in anything you do.
It is narrated on the authority of Amir al-Mu’minin (leader of the Believers), Abu Hafs ‘Umar bin al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him), who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah peace be upon him say:
Actions are according to intentions, and everyone will get what was intended. Whoever migrates with an intention for Allah and His messenger, the migration will be for the sake of Allah and his Messenger.Sahih al-Bukhari 1