The important part of a building is the foundation, if the foundation is strong, the building will be strong too. In Islam it is exactly the same: if your pillars (Shahadah, Salah, Zakah, Sawm, and Haj) are strong then your other fundamentals will also be sound.

The two angels who are charged with questioning the dead come to him and ask him what he used to believe in his earthly life, who was his Lord, what was his religion, and who was his Prophet. If he gives a good answer, that is good, but if he does not answer them they inflict a severe and painful beating on him. (Tirmidhi) These are the three basic principles that every Muslim should know: knowledge about his creator (Allah), knowledge about his religion (Islam), knowledge about his Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). These are the answers to the questions which will be asked by everyone in the grave.

Allah, the Merciful has made the final test easy for us by telling us the questions. We just have to work hard toward it so that we can remember and answer them because our final test can be any time. We have to seek knowledge about these questions without associating any partners with Allah. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “Allah has promised that anyone who says this three times every morning or evening will be happy on the Day of Resurrection.” “I am pleased with Allah as my Lord, with Islam as my religion, and with Muhammad (peace be upon him) as my Prophet.”

Are we pleased with Allah as our Lord? If yes, then why do we complain about His decree, His commands, and indulge ourselves in pleasing others by disobeying Him. ‘Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated, I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him)saying,” If anyone seeks Allah’s pleasure at the expense of people’s anger, Allah will be pleased with him and will cause people to be pleased with him. However, if anyone seeks people’s satisfaction at the expense of Allah’s anger, Allah will be angry with him and will cause people to be angry with him.” (by Ibn Hibban)

Are we pleased with His religion and His Messenger? We say it but we don’t act upon it. We follow what satisfies us and pleases others. Islam means to surrender our will to Allah, so why don’t we obey the commands of Allah and submit to His teachings willingly.

We know that it can give us great rewards in the Hereafter and that this world is only our transit period, yet we act on our own will.

Let us begin now by pondering upon our life and renew our faith in Allah and strive to learn the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), and inculcate his sayings and actions in our lives so we can reap its fruits in the Hereafter and if Allah wills then in this world too. And most importantly, to answer the questions in our grave!

– by Lubna Ali