Transform Your Prayer: Day 5
The One Blessing
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In my last email, we looked at the importance of being aware of Your First Thought when the time for prayer comes...
...because it will affect how you're going to approach and do that prayer.
So if it's negative or neutral, how do you shift it to be positive? And if it's positive, how can you make it even more positive?
Let's take a look at the number one tip to build a more positive relationship with prayer...
I call this tip: The One Blessing.
It's inspired by this powerful verse in the Qur'an (14:34):
And He has given you from all that you asked Him for. If you tried to count God’s blessings, you would never be able to calculate them. The human being is truly unjust and ungrateful.
Above is the pretty standard translation you'll find, but there's a hidden gem in this verse...
The singular word blessing (ni'mah) is used; not the plural blessings.
So, in my humble estimation, here's a more literal translation of that part of the verse:
If you tried to count [i.e. put a value on] one of God’s blessings, you would never be able to calculate [i.e. put a value on] it.
If you have a negative or neutral relationship with prayer, then don't just think about your blessings (quite vague)...
...think about just ONE blessing (specific and evokes emotion).
Ask yourself: "What's The One Blessing I want to appreciate Allah for since my last prayer?
Ask yourself this question every time the time for prayer comes.
Because I find that deep gratitude brings a keenness to offer one's prayers. And not artificially, but genuinely.
You actually WANT to pray to Allah as a means of thanks and appreciation for that blessing.
Prayer is a natural reaction, when you recognize the infinite value of the gift(s) which the Gift Giver has bestowed upon you.
Insha'Allah, this will change the way you approach and do salat.
Here are two simple examples that work for me whenever I have resistance to doing my salat, or I feel negative or neutral about praying:
1. I just look at my hand. And I think... in the last few hours, in how many different ways have I made use of my hand? My fingers?
The single blessing of one of my hands (not even both) with all its intricacies, usefulness and benefits is enough to motivate me to get up again for 5-10 minutes and show gratitude to my Lord...
...to thank Him and show Him that I don't take His blessing of giving me a fully functional hand for granted.
2. I consciously take a deep breath. And then I realize that the ability to have taken that breath, and all the breaths since my last prayer, is all the motivation I need to do my next salat, and to do it well.
What's The One Blessing for you, Farzan?
Try it for your next five prayers (and beyond). And, insha'Allah, I hope it helps your relationship with prayer go from:
Negative ➜ Neutral ➜ Positive