Repair your relationships? Whaaaat? I thought Ramadan is only about reading the Quran and praying taraweeh. Who has time for relationships? I have goals I need to finish – like completing the reading of the Quran, perfecting my recitation and doing as many sunnah prayers as possible. I simply don’t have time. I would like to go in my little cocoon and do my worship in peace without any distractions, expectations or demands. I don’t want to be disturbed! Sounds familiar?
Well, you are not alone! Majority of my clients have expressed their utter annoyance at their family members for being in the way of their worship. They are absolutely flustered about having to balance their marital life and kids with all the demands of Ramadan. The obvious solution for many is to ignore their spouse and kids in order to get the maximum benefit (or they think) of this blessed month. They justify their actions by thinking that it’s only once a year and they can just manage without the extra time and care.
What if you were missing out on the actual fruit of Ramadan?
What if in the haste of reading and praying you left out one of the most valuable forms of worship which is being kind, understanding and available to your loved ones?
What if you were stepping over a treasure chest of good deeds and neglecting what Allah values?
I know many of you are still not convinced. You have a list to accomplish & there is a limited amount of time in the day. I want you to reflect for a moment. Put the list aside just for a while and think why does Allah want you to do these acts of worship.
What is the purpose of reading the Quran?
What is the purpose of staying away from food and water?
What is the purpose of standing in prayer?
All these acts are done to PERFECT YOUR CHARACTER.
The Prophet Mohammad (peace and salat upon him) was known for his exceptional character.
And indeed, you are of a great moral character. (Surat al-qalam 68:4)
It was through these acts of worship which even further shaped the impeccable character of the Prophet (peace and salat upon him).
I’m all for setting Ramadan spiritual goals and resolutions. Hearts are revived as the Quran is diligently read daily, fasting feeds the soul and the taraweeh is like an IV that nourishes the powerful bond with Allah. I’m simply saying that each of these acts of worship is designed in Allah’s infinite wisdom to train you to have a better character. Instead of simply reading the Quran to be able to check it off a list, read with understanding and reflection. Try actually implementing the advice that Allah is giving you.
Allah is above all examples, but imagine if you make an appointment with a guru like Brandon Buchard to get advice on optimal performance or you arrange a meeting with Mark Zuckerburg to get business advice and money making strategies. Let’s say they give you a series of advice and then have you read their books. Now what if you only read the books over and over again, but don’t implement a single advice? How much will you change your performance or your business if you only read and don’t take action? You will get nowhere! That’s the same with the Quran. Even though you are rewarded for every letter that you read, if you don’t apply these powerful words of advice you will not attain the transformative effects of the Quran. These words and advice will transform you if you put them to use.
There are hundreds of verses in the Quran about compassionate living, forgiveness, charity and good character but only one verse about fasting which means that through fasting we need to cultivate compassion and good character in order to fulfill what has been emphasized the most: good character.
Intention to Repair
I know that in the past or even before this article you never thought about putting any time and effort into your relationship because it’s the month of the Quran and Taraweeh, but I want you to make your intention to improve your marriage as well. Come on….a genuine intention not half-hearted! The kind of intention you make to fast all 30 days without faltering.
Hadith Nawawi: Indeed all actions are based on the intentions
Why in the world in Ramadan?
- For better concentration, energy and achievement of your Ramadan goals! Everyone knows that a broken marriage completely drains you emotionally & depletes you of energy, concentration & time. If you are in a fight with your spouse you will not be able to have khushu in your prayer or have the right attitude of benevolence. Once you fix your relationship you will be better able to perform all your acts of worship.
- The shayateen are locked up so all the whispering about how annoying and frustrating your spouse is will hopefully come to a halt or at least slow down.
- You are high on iman! You are fasting, praying and reading Quran which all act as a cleanser for your heart. With a purified heart and a new found closeness with Allah, you will be able to be more loving, forgiving and compassionate to your spouse.
- Rewards are multiplied. Think of that morsel of food you put in your spouse’s mouth and how heavy it will be on the scales. Now if you actually play a role in saving your marriage from divorce then you have hit the ajar jackpot – much more reward than sitting in seclusion and reading away while giving dirty, cold looks at your spouse.
OK…Ok…I’m sold…now what?
Now that you have made your intention to repair your marriage and you understand the logic of doing it in Ramadan, you are ready to begin. Remember you are doing this to get the maximum amount of rewards this Ramadan through your marriage. It’s easy to read your Quran and pray lengthy prayers in isolation, but it’s extremely hard to overcome your pride and repair your relationship. When you stretch yourself beyond your comfort zone, that’s when you can reach a new level of spiritual awareness. So get ready to streeeeetch!
Here are some actions you can start immediately:
- Forgive the past mistakes – think of the massive reward & your status with Allah!
- Let go of the grudges – no need to drag this emotional mess with you
- Smile – smiling is charity so why not give it generously to your spouse and kids?
- Do loving acts throughout the day
- Get small, thoughtful gifts throughout the month for your spouse
The Prophet (peace and salat upon him) said: Tahado Tahabo: Give gifts to increase love
- Spend at least 15 minutes a day bonding, reading or sharing each day
- Leave love notes around the house about the things you appreciate in your spouse
- Give a series of thank you cards this month expressing how you feel about them
- Listen to their struggles, dreams and be a source of encouragement
- Be affectionate with words, physical touch and loving acts
- Be a source of tranquility, love and mercy
And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquillity in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought. (Surat al-Rum:21)
Reading Quran –>Better Character
As you read each day take at least 1 point that you can implement with your spouse. For instance, if you read a verse about kindness, then make a commitment to practice kindness that entire day. If you read about giving charity, then donate something small to the masjid. In this way you are applying what you are reading and reaping the rewards. As your character improves your marriage will also improve insha’Allah.
So when the Qur’an is recited, then listen to it and pay attention that you may receive mercy. (Surat al Araf:204)
If you can give up food and water during the day for 30 days, then you can do anything insha’Allah. Feel strong enough to overcome your shortcomings this Ramadan. If you are impatient focus on deep breathing and not overreacting, if you are arrogant focus on being genuinely humble, if you are mean focus on showing kindness to your spouse. If you have a tendency to get angry do your best to control it.
Who spend [in the cause of Allah ] during ease and hardship and who restrain anger and who pardon the people – and Allah loves the doers of good;
The hours spent in prayer needs to instill patience in your heart. Demonstrate this patience in the way you talk, react and live with your spouse and kids. You can’t pray for an hour then turn around and say something hurtful to your spouse. If you are doing this then there is something missing in your worship. The only way you can be assured that your acts of worship are being accepted fully is if you are able to demonstrate the fruits of your worship in your relationships which is an impeccable character.
O you who have believed, seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, Allah is with the patient. (Surat al-Baqara:153)
Use this Ramadan to connect each worship to improving your relationships by making sure that you extrapolate the essential character and lesson for each act. In this way, you will not only reap the rewards of this blessed month, but also repair your relationships insha’Allah. If you are interested in learning more about repairing your marriage in Ramadan sign up for my FREE video training: Ramadan Relationship Repair at halehbanani.com/ramadan