As Hurricane Sandy heads our way and people all over the East Coast prepare to bunker down, this verse from the Quran comes to mind:
“Certainly, We shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss of wealth, lives and fruits (of your toil), but give glad tidings to (As-Sabireen) those who patiently persevere.” ( Surat-al Baqarah, 155)
Give charity. Why do we need to see the disaster before we open our purses and give? You can make a payment online to any reputable charity or use services like wire transfers etc.
The Prophet said: “Give charity without delay, for it stands in the way of calamity.” – Al-Tirmidhi, Hadith 589
Increase your isthighfaar, your dhikr. The sunnah is to go to the masjid in times of calamity but many of the masajid and Islamic Centers are closed. Be sure to call them to check and see if they are open, otherwise pray in jamaa’ at home. Some Islamic Centers have done an excellent job keeping the the community informed with public service announcements.
Go about your normal business- do practical things that will benefit your family. Do all your laundry so if the water does go off, you have clean clothes. Basically tie up your camel. Here is a checklist from the Red Cross. If things get really bad, important papers should be ready to go, there are other real life tips here.
I am finding this a great time to talk to my children about nature, death, grave, afterlife, hisaab, Allah’s Love and Mercy and being thankful for what they do have.
Go check on your neighbors, especially the elderly.
We feel so helpless when catastrophes happen overseas and wish we could be there to help out. There will be damage and plenty of opportunity to serve your community.
If your community has experienced a disaster, register on the American Red Cross Safe and Well web site to let your family and friends know about your welfare. You may also call 1-866-GET-INFO to register yourself and your family.
We are keeping all of you who are in the path of this storm in our duas.May Allah shower us with His Mercy. We ask Allah to make us of those who when afflicted with a calamity truly remember and have patience on : Inna lillaahi wa inna ilayhi raaji`oon. We ask only Him to help us in our calamities, tests and trials, to be able to persevere patiently, to overcome, and to ask His reward and anticipate the reward from Him , and to compensate us with that which is better.
Shurayh al Qadi’s quotes in his biography, “If I am afflicted with a calamity, I praise Allah for it four times: I praise Him because it wasn’t worse than it was, I praise Him when He gives me the patience to bear it, I praise Him for enabling me to say al-istiraj’ (‘To Allah we belong and to him we will return’; see Surat Al-Baqarah: 154-156 ) in hope of a great reward, and I praise Him for not making it a calamity in my religion.” Al-Dhahabî, Siyar A’lam Al-Nubala`
Allah humma inni asaluka khayrraha wa ‘auzubika min sharriha
‘O Allah, I ask You for it’s goodness and I take refuge with You from it’s evil.
O Allah, I ask You for it’s goodness, the good wihin it, and the good it was sent with, and I take refuge with You from it’s evil, the evil within it, and from the evil it was sent with.’
Allahumma la taqtulna bi-ghadhabik wa la tuhlikna bi-‘adhaabik wa ‘aafina qabla dhaalik
“O Allah, don’t end our lives with Your wrath, and do not make us perish with Your punishment and forgive us before that.”