I was recently at a wedding and there was a lot of talk about wedding vows. Some people who gave speeches reminded the couple to constantly renew their vows and stay true to their promises to each other. For me, this is a reminder that no matter how much love there is between two people, they still need to put effort into the relationship, and the behavior shown towards each other needs to reflect what’s felt inside. Because true love is shown through beautiful actions, not flowery words.
All of us love God. That’s why it’s important for us to show Allah that we love Him in a way that He wants us to, rather than just saying it. One of the clearest ways to express that love is by praying the five daily prayers. Actions really do speak louder than words.
The Prophet (saws) was asked, “Which act is the best?” He (saws) said, “The daily prayers at their fixed times.” [Narrated in Sahih Bukhari]
“And I have chosen you, so listen to what is revealed. Indeed, I am Allah. There is no god except Me, so worship Me and establish prayer for My remembrance.” [Qur’an 20:13-14]
There are other actions that are beloved to Allah as well, and praying salah doesn’t automatically make someone a perfect Muslim or even a good person. But the first thing that we’ll be asked about on the Day of Judgment is the prayer, and I think there’s a lot of weight in that. We don’t want our other good deeds to go to waste because we aren’t offering our prayers. And when done with the right intention, which is to get closer to our Creator and prove our love and gratitude to Him, salah can purify us and improve our character.
All of us love God. That’s why it’s important for us to show Allah that we love Him in a way that He wants us to, rather than just saying it.
I do want to acknowledge, though, that it’s not always easy to keep up our daily prayers. There are times when I’m out somewhere and I know I won’t be back home in time to offer a certain prayer. So I pray in awkward places like school, work, the mall, a restaurant, etc. But it’s important for me to do this because it’s my way of showing Allah that I really do love Him.
Most of us would drop whatever we’re doing to be there for a family member or loved one, regardless of the time or place. And Allah is even more deserving of our attention. Those five minutes that we take out five times a day are a chance for us to prove our love to God, rather than just claiming it’s true with nothing to show for it. It shows that we remember Allah, just like we expect Him to remember us.
“So remember Me; I’ll remember you.” [Qur’an 2:152]