I know this Ummah of Muhammad’s ﷺ is a big family, but sometimes I wonder if the rest of the family realizes this. Take for example the concept of advising each other. There is no doubt that we should do it, we should want for our family members what we want for ourselves, we should give the very shirt off our backs when given the opportunity, but the reality is unless we are getting something out of it we only truly care for ourselves.
That’s where the problem of giving advice comes in. Most often we tend to give advice only to hear ourselves speak, to show that we have mastered some subject that others haven’t. It all comes down to pride and it’s dangerous. It’s like a sledgehammer that some pound on the hearts of their fellow believing family.
“I never debated anyone but that I would love for him to be guided, directed, helped, and for him to be under the care of God and his protection. And I never debated with anyone but that I did not mind whether God clarified the truth on my tongue or his tongue.” – Imam Shafii
This is how we should approach both giving advice and receiving it, but time and time again we seem to get in our own way.
Just today I read a comment from @ibnabitareq where he mentioned that someone attacked him a while back on some subject via twitter, turns out that same brother recently declared that he left Islam.
Why is this overwhelmingly the case? That so often those who hate to receive advice and those who most often give it (without wisdom) are both on two ends of the spectrum, both hurting, both lost, both in need of guidance and oftentimes too hurt to receive the help and assistance that they need.
You are the only solution. Your guidance, your love, your providential care is the only thing that can save us in these turbulent times.
So I ask of you to sculpt us into the family that we need to be. A family of mercy, with wisdom, guided by you in all that we do. A family that is cautious of how we speak to each other, and open to changing when we need to.
Jumada Al Thani 27th, 1440
March 4th, 2019
Arthur K. Richards