Friday, July 20, 2012

Hope floats your boat!

My little poll to the right timed out today, coinciding with the start of Ramadan (now it makes sense, huh?)—and while not a lot of people voted, the favor went overwhelmingly to hope as a motivator. I used to be crippled by procrastination and have some flare-ups now and then, but I'm mostly driven to accomplish my goals by a hybrid mixture of hope and encouragement.

I'd love to hear from you about your tricks and tactics to banish the "I'll do it later" monster from your life.

Finding flowcharts for my blog on the googles is my version of drawing a pterodactyl.

Well folks, it's Ramadan! A heartfelt Ramadan Kareem (Generous Ramadan) to all of you celebrating our beautiful religion and this month of mercy. May Allah bring you many blessings and draw you closer to Him in these 29 or 30 days.

The QB and I watched a great video last night from Br. Nouman Ali Khan (don't be fooled by the videographer giving him the title of "shaykh", he's not a shaykh and says so often!). It was one of the first talks about Ramadan that didn't make me say, "Here we go again", because it's usually the same thing about empathy for the starving (valid, but not the only reason we fast) and other things that get repeated over and over. Please watch if you're Muslim and want to have a more fulfilling Ramadan!!

To everyone else, I wish you the best this month in whatever you're facing. I believe that Allah is watching over us all, and He's ready to deal with your mess of a life if you'll give it over to Him, as I did mine. It helped a lot, lemme tell you!

Here's a list of things I don't do anymore after becoming Muslim. You will be shock-ed.

1) Drink.
2) Smoke.
3) Do any sort of drugs (and I used to be up for doing any sort of drugs).
4) Swear like, all the time.
5) Worry about what I look like all the time, especially as a chubby, super-white girl among skinny, tan beauties with their stuff all hanging out for everyone to drool over.
6) Eat pork or any other meat that isn't slaughtered humanely in the name of Allah (or the Jewish/Christian equivalent).
7) Blow off my family in their times of need for my friends.
8) Blame others for all of my problems.
9) Wonder what's going to happen when I die. Now I know. For sure.
10) I don't know, I felt there needed to be a #10.

All of this was possible only with the help of Allah. I know I could lose all of these benefits in a minute if He willed it, and it's exactly this power that keeps me turning back to Him when times are tuff. Allah can do anything—He is the All-Knower and Most Merciful. We are weak, forgetful, lazy, and ungrateful. But He guides who He wills and I am so very thankful that I was chosen to be among his slaves. Some people think that the word "slave" is negative and shouldn't be used. But I say it's only negative when you are a slave to one of Allah's creations (a person, an industry like fashion, a job... ) but when reserved only for Allah, it's beautiful. We do what He asks us to do and he takes care of us. We don't get paid in this life, but the bonus check waiting for us later is huge. Like way bigger than those giant checks people get when they win the lottery.

This is getting pretty cheesy, but you gotta cut me some slack. I'm at hour 15 of 17.5 on my first day of fasting so my brain is a little woogly. I hope you understand.


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