A third of our month is over and alhamdulillah I am ending today with nothing but smiles on my face. I had a long morning, full of errands and driving, but an exciting and productive evening.
In the evening and into the night, I volunteered at an Interfaith Iftar at my mosque, helping them set up, distribute dinner, and then clean up afterwards.
I was happy at finally being able to spend an iftar in my own mosque. As I have said in the past, I have a love-hate relationship with my mosque, as I’m sure many young adults do, but in the end my mosque is my mosque. Whatever issues I have with how it is run is at times forgotten when I enter the prayer area and am reminded of the countless prayers and janazas and weddings that were observed on that carpet. Nostalgia always gets to me.
After setting up the event room, I spent a good hour sitting in the prayer area and reading my Qur’an. Interestingly, my attention has much more endurance when reading Qur’an in the masjid versus my room where I am surrounded by distractions.
Being able to help as well as spend time in the masjid was nice, but what really made this such a positive experience were the people I met and the interactions I had. I am an introvert; always have been, probably always will be. I am very talkative with people I am comfortable with, but once I am in an unfamiliar situation, I close up, and the thought of any kind of new social interaction really intimidates me. Because of this, I struggle with making new friends, and even more with keeping them.
So, the reason for my happiness is none other than friendly interaction. I was surprised to be reunited with a couple of old friends as well as a group of kids whom I hold very close to my heart tonight. That alone made my night, but what put a perfect cherry on top was at the end of the night.
By a miracle of God, lo and behold, one of the people at this event worked at one of the places I have been considering for my internship. When I first heard about this place from a family member, I was hesitant about applying. However, the woman today described what they do at this place, and it subhanAllah fit almost exactly what I had been looking for as a location to begin this journey to a career. The moment the program was over, I all but ran up to her and introduced myself. Now I have an email address to contact and hopefully a good impression made. Alhamdulillah. Alhamdulillah. Alhamdulillah. Praise the Lord.
“Networking” has become one of those buzzwords that literally makes me cringe, so thank God that this opportunity presented itself.
Additionally, there were quite a few people at this event who I have seen around the community, but never formally met. In some miraculous spurt of bravery and friendliness, I approached these people and greeted them, in some cases even making a bit of conversation.
I realize this might not seem that impressive to others. So I talked to a few people, so what? However I just can’t help but feel so happy that I was able to do this. It isn’t so much that I am proud of myself or feel accomplished; I am just relieved and thankful that these opportunities arose and I was finally able to take advantage of them instead of watch yet another opportunity go by. Maybe I’m finally growing up.
*Quote of the Day*
Today I read about Abu Hurayrah. His name I have heard countless times before, because he is one of the most well-known transmitters of Hadith (sayings of Muhammad (S)). An interesting tidbit of knowledge: One of the reasons why he had so much to report about the Messenger (S) was because he had a brilliant memory, which he specifically prayed for once when in the company of the Messenger (S).
My book describes one of the practices of Abu Hurayrah, which I think is really beautiful:
“Qiyam Ul-Layl – staying up for the night in prayer and devotion – was a regular practice of his family…He would stay up for a third of the night, his wife for another third and his daughter for a third. In this way, in the house of Abu Hurayrah no hour of the night would pass without ibadah, dhikr, and Salat” (Hamid 84).