Be strong. Even when you are weak.

Be strong. Even when you are weak.

The strong believer

Allah Almighty wants us to be strong.

عن أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه قال‏:‏ قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم‏:‏ ‏ “‏ المؤمن القوي خير وأحب إلى الله من المؤمن الضعيف وفي كل خير‏.‏ احرص على ما ينفعك، واستعن بالله وَلاَ تَعْجِزْ‏.‏ وإن أصابك شيء فلا تقل‏:‏ لو أني فعلت كان كذا وكذا، ولكن قل‏:‏ قدر الله، وما شاء فعل؛ فإن لو تفتح عمل الشيطان‏”‏ ‏(‏‏(‏ رواه مسلم‏)‏‏)‏‏.‏

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (peace be on him) said:

“A strong believer is better and dearer to Allah than a weak one, and both are good. Adhere to that which is beneficial for you. Keep asking Allah for help and do not refrain from it. If you are afflicted in any way, do not say: ‘If I had taken this or that step, it would have resulted into such and such,’ but say only: ‘Allah so determined and did as He willed.’ The word ‘if’ opens the gates of satanic thoughts”. (Muslim)

The Prophet is telling us that we have to be strong in our imaan, and that we should not show weakness.

We have weakness

Of course we have weakness. Allah Almighty said:

يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ أَن يُخَفِّفَ عَنكُمْ ۚ وَخُلِقَ الْإِنسَانُ ضَعِيفًا

God intends to lighten your burden, for the human being was created weak. (4:28)

۞ اللَّهُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُم مِّن ضَعْفٍ ثُمَّ جَعَلَ مِن بَعْدِ ضَعْفٍ قُوَّةً ثُمَّ جَعَلَ مِن بَعْدِ قُوَّةٍ ضَعْفًا وَشَيْبَةً ۚ يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ ۖ وَهُوَ الْعَلِيمُ الْقَدِيرُ

God is He Who created you weak, then after weakness gave you strength, then after strength gave you weakness and grey hair. He creates whatever He wills. He is the Omniscient, the Omnipotent. (30:54)

There is a big difference between knowing your weakness and allowing your enemy to exploit your weakness. Allah does not want our enemies to take advantage of us and prey on our weakness.

Do not show weakness

In the Battle of Uhud, the Muslims were defeated and behind the scenes hypocrisy among some believers in their ranks made them vulnerable and weakened them. Many of them their troops were martyred and the Prophet (peace be on him) himself was injured. Allah Almighty revealed these Ayahs:

وَلَا تَهِنُوا فِي ابْتِغَاءِ الْقَوْمِ ۖ إِن تَكُونُوا تَأْلَمُونَ فَإِنَّهُمْ يَأْلَمُونَ كَمَا تَأْلَمُونَ ۖ وَتَرْجُونَ مِنَ اللَّهِ مَا لَا يَرْجُونَ ۗ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ عَلِيمًا حَكِيمًا

And do not show weakness in the pursuit of the enemy. If you are aching, they are aching as you are aching, but you expect from God what they cannot expect. God is Knowledgeable and Wise. (4:104)

إِن يَمْسَسْكُمْ قَرْحٌ فَقَدْ مَسَّ الْقَوْمَ قَرْحٌ مِّثْلُهُ ۚ وَتِلْكَ الْأَيَّامُ نُدَاوِلُهَا بَيْنَ النَّاسِ وَلِيَعْلَمَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَيَتَّخِذَ مِنكُمْ شُهَدَاءَ ۗ وَاللَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الظَّالِمِينَ

If a wound afflicts you, a similar wound has afflicted the others. Such days We alternate between the people, that God may know those who believe, and take martyrs from among you. God does not love the evildoers. (3:140)

The rights side and the wrong side are not equal

When you sustain injuries and losses, do not forget that your enemy has incurred injuries and losses as well. They are weakened too.

Moreover they will not receive what you will receive from Allah – victory, reward, strength and power. They rely only on their weapons and technology and oppression. You have Allah’s support. So do not sit down and accept defeat.

Be mentally strong

Ibn al Jawzi, and other scholars said that these ayahs were revealed after the Battle of Uhud. The morale of community was hit hard, they were aching from defeat physically and psychologically.

The Prophet (peace be on him) was not deterred by their defeat, he took the decision to pursue Abu Sufyan and the enemies. It demonstrated that they may have suffered losses, but they were not going to let themselves be beaten. They had the courage and determination to keep fighting for their cause.

Your connection with Allah will ultimately bring you victory

This ayah boosts their morale and tells them, while both sides are wounded, they have the upper hand. It is their connection with Allah and obedience to Him that will give them victory. Of course they need to do the preparation and training but they will also have Allah’s support.

These are the two wings. Do not rely exclusively on your power, otherwise you will be defeated.

Even if you are suffering do not show to your enemy that you are weak.

In Surat Al Imran, Allah Almighty says

If a wound has afflicted you (at Uhud), a wound like it has also afflicted the (unbelieving) people; and We bring these days to men by turns, and that Allah may know those who believe and take witnesses from among you; and Allah does not love the unjust. (3:140)

Defend yourself

This re-iterates that defeat does not mean you should stop following the command of Allah and supporting the truth and defending your rights. This is what we have seen in Palestine.

We are on the right side, this is our land and our property we should not allow anyone to take it from us. We need to come together and hold on to it with all our might. We must do our best to defend it and we must not side with the oppressors.

Yes our brothers and sisters are suffering. But remember our enemy is also suffering.

We must show weakness, but solidarity and strength and rely on Allah.

We are on the right side. We have the right to this land. We need to come together and hold on to our rights with our hands.

We must not side with oppression.

We ask Allah Almighty to make us strong, be connected to Him and to defend our rights. And may He make us victorious. Ameen.

Shaykh Haytham Tamim – Thought for the Week

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Shaykh Haytham Tamim is the founder and main teacher of the Utrujj Foundation. He has provided a leading vision for Islamic learning in the UK, which has influenced the way Islamic knowledge is disseminated. He has orchestrated the design and delivery of over 200 unique courses since Utrujj started in 2001. His extensive expertise spans over 30 years across the main Islamic jurisprudence schools of thought. He has studied with some of the foremost scholars in their expertise; he holds some of the highest Ijazahs (certificates) in Quran, Hadith (the Prophetic traditions) and Fiqh (Islamic rulings). His own gift for teaching was evident when he gave his first sermon to a large audience at the age of 17 and went on to serve as a senior lecturer of Islamic transactions and comparative jurisprudence at the Islamic University of Beirut (Shariah College). He has continued to teach; travelling around the UK, Europe and wider afield, and won the 2015 BISCA award (British Imams & Scholars Contributions & Achievements Awards) for Outstanding Contribution to Education and Teaching.