As human beings, we protect the things that are near and dear to us. For some, their sports car may be very important to them so you’ll see them be very cautious when driving it, you’ll see them cleaning it often, making sure it’s in top shape. For others, the numbers in their bank account may be important, or their house, or even relationships- when we love someone, we guard that love. It’s natural- the more we care about something, the more we protect it and think about it.
There’s a du’a in the Qur’an that is one of my favorites because it’s a plea to Allah to keep us moving forward with iman- the most important thing that we have in this dunya. “Our Lord, let not our hearts deviate after You have guided us and grant us from Yourself mercy. Indeed, You are the Bestower.” [3:9] We beg Allah to protect our hearts from being misguided after being guided, and we’re begging Allah to give us His mercy as a gift, out of His generosity; indeed He is Al-Wahhab- the one who gives without any restriction, without any limits or boundaries. We beg Allah for mercy to keep carrying us forward, to keep growing in our iman and protection from regressing because at the end of the day, that’s what matters the most.
Shaykh Abdul Nasir Jangda at Quran Intensive said something very beautiful about this. He said that “at the end of the day, our iman is the most important thing and everything else is arbitrary, everything else is temporary. If you really get down to the bottom of it, Iman is the only thing that matters. If there was a person, that was in rags, torn up clothes, not a penny to their name, no family to cry over them, no one to go back to, if he’s living in a cardboard box but in their last breath, they say la illaha ill Allah, then they have succeeded. That person is successful, that person has attained Jannah. But the person who lived in a palace, surrounded by top notch doctors with thousands of people crying over them and attending their funeral but they never knew who Allah is, they don’t die with iman- that person would not be considered successful.”
Our faith is the key to our success in this dunya and in the hereafter. Just like we treat the things we love and the people we love with care, we must also guard and care for our faith, engaging is that which increases our iman and staying away from things that can potentially corrupt it. And we must be people that always beg Allah to protect our hearts and increase us in iman and to keep us guided on a path that leads straight to Him. May Allah make every day a means of us getting closer to Him and make us people who live & die la illaha ill Allah.