Lunar forty: a letter to my Lord

INsights 025, Friday 7th October 2022


You can listen to or download an audio file of this edition of INsights
by clicking here
 or on the image below:


For the first time, you can watch this edition of INsights on YouTube:



Or if you prefer to read then simply keep scrolling...


My Lord, I was born on Monday 14th Rabi’al-Awwal 1404.

In just three days, it will be Monday 14th Rabi’al-Awwal 1444.

I will reach, with Your permission, the significant age of forty.

In Your final revelation to human beings, you mention this very age in the forty-sixth chapter, entitled Sand Dunes. 

In the fifteenth verse, You say:

We have commanded people to honour their parents. Their mothers bore them in hardship and delivered them in hardship. Their bearing and weaning is thirty months. In time, when the child reaches their prime at the age of forty, they supplicate:

“My Lord! Inspire me to be truly thankful for the favours You have granted me and my parents, and to do good deeds that please You. Instil righteousness in my offspring. I truly repent to You, and I submit myself fully to You.”

I am very grateful that You have kept both my parents alive as I cross this important milestone in my own life. Help me honour them in the best possible way. Help me give them the love and support in their old age that they deserve from me. Be merciful to them as they cared for me at a young age.

I thank You profusely for the countless blessings You have given me. I have not been worthy. You have been immensely generous. 

I know that words of gratitude are not enough...

I need to use everything You have given me to worship You, serve You and strive for You in the best way I can.

I feel the urgency now more than ever before. 

For many years, I have been reflecting on what it is that You want from me. Not just in general, but quite specifically. I’ve asked myself questions like these over and over again: 

What shall I focus my time and energy on? 

How can I, in Your eyes, be most impactful? 

What will please You the most?

I feel as though You have kindly been answering my questions. You have been taking me on a journey of discovering my true potential and understanding why You put me here in the first place. 

Ultimately, you’ve inspired me to focus on delivering transformational educational experiences to help people lead truly God-centred lives.

Specifically, you’ve guided me to try and help people achieve a connection with You through their prayer, achieve clarity through Your revelation and achieve the courage to fulfil their leadership potential by striving for Your cause. 

As things stand, I don’t see myself doing anything unrelated to this work until I die. Elevating the level of God-consciousness in myself and others – helping myself and others find and travel the path to You – is the only work that I find truly worthwhile. 

You’ve helped me get this far despite my many bouts of pessimism, frustration and heedlessness. You’ve supported me despite my delusion, sinfulness and ingratitude. Truly, I am embarrassed. I am so sorry. I know I have failed You and failed myself in so many ways.

But You’ve always lifted me up and given me the confidence to know that the possibility of redemption and meaningful achievement remains. For this I am deeply grateful. 

I hope I have learned from the errors of my ways. Youth is no longer an excuse for me. I feel acutely aware of the fact that I am now entering a critical phase of my life. If it’s a game of two halves, the second half is beginning.

Forty is the very age at which You decided your final messenger should begin his own life’s mission, may You grant him blessings and peace. 

It is the age at which I’m supposed to have had enough time and experience to give me the level of wisdom and intellect that will allow me to make excellent choices, to be fully focused on what You want from me, to avoid distractions and unnecessary errors. 

So I am determined to become more disciplined than ever before. Because I know that it’s only a lack of discipline that is holding me back from becoming who You want me to be. The outcomes of my work are in Your hands. But doing the work with excellence is my responsibility.  

To this end, I will keep death on my mind every single day. I will remind myself that I am possibly only a few moments away from entering into the realm of accountability and judgement from You. I will put the words, “What if I die tonight?” on the walls of my study and bedroom, and on my phone too.


Death is more than sufficient as a warner. Help me take it even more seriously and help me make the most of the little time I have left. Let me make no more excuses for myself as I know I don’t really have any good ones. I know that readiness to leave this world doesn’t mean being perfect. But it does mean staying on course and giving You everything I’ve got.

Lord, give me sincerity. Rid my heart and actions of hypocrisy. 

Prevent me from making the same mistakes twice. Stop me from using any of Your blessings in ways that displease You. Hold me back from looking at things that I shouldn’t, listening to things that I shouldn’t, saying any more words that I’ll regret. 

Enable me to always be positive, about You, about how things are and about the future. Don’t let the devil touch me with negativity or hopelessness or the desire to disobey You. Surround me with good people who get the big picture, who will help me on this journey.

Let me be kind and calm always. Help me look after my family members and those who have rights over me in the best possible way. Make me a wonderful son, brother, husband and father. 

Make me an encouraging example for my children. Let them become far better than me and make them emerge as true leaders. Let them travel the paths of champions for Your cause.

Help me live up to the full implications of the supplication You have recommended at this age. 

Let me not fall short.

Let me not prove unworthy.

Let these words not be in vain. 

Because in the next verse, the sixteenth verse, You say:

We accept from such people the best of what they do and We overlook their bad deeds. They will be among the people of Paradise – the true promise that has been given to them.

My Lord, please make me one of these people. Include me in Your true promise. 

Please accept these words as a mark of my commitment and devotion to You.

Please make them an ongoing inspiration for myself and others. 

I hope to meet and see You very soon.

Your flawed but determined servant,


Iqbal



Before you go...


Let me know how you found this edition of INsights
 by clicking on one of the words below.

Transformative

Helpful

Engaging

Boring

Confusing


To read previous editions of INsights, 
click here and scroll down to the bottom of the page.

If you use the Telegram app and you’d like to join a community of 2,200+ believers where I share short, regular insights, click here.

Have a blessed fortnight. I'll see you in two Fridays, God willing.

📩 Subscribe to INsights


Join a growing community of more than 24,000 fellow believers worldwide. Every other Friday I share relevant, actionable and inspirational content, directly to your inbox, to help you achieve the connection, clarity and courage to live a truly God-centred life.