Have you ever considered the value of time?
Have you ever thought about the passing seconds, minutes, hours, days, months and years?
The time we experience moment by moment sometimes appears to slow down. Yet after hours or days pass by, one realizes that time passes very fast.
Everyone is recently complaining about how fast time is passing by, so much so that almost everyone must have heard their friends saying things like, “We were together last week, but it seems like only yesterday!” “I washed my car just last week and how quickly it got dirty again!” So how well do we make use of this valuable time we are given that passes by so fast?
Time Passes Quickly
When we reflect a little, we can see that the time we have left in this world is diminishing rapidly. A person experiences many things between babyhood and maturity; such as school, working life and career; then one’s day-to-day activities add onto that as well. When things like tests in school, a busy work environment and responsibilities awaiting at home piles up, one finds himself totally wrapped up in those. That leads to one forgetting the real purpose of life, the reason for one’s presence in this world, in other words.
Everyone inevitably encounters reports of death while reading the paper or watching television everyday. Many people have a sudden flash of enlightenment at that moment and think about the person who has died and felt touched by this news. If the deceased was a young person, they generally start thinking that such an early death deprived the deceased of things such as a career and marriage. As a matter of fact, death can come to anyone at any moment. It makes no difference if one is a child, young or old; death can come in the form of a heart attack or a traffic accident. Yet although many people do reflect on these things, they become distracted and return to thinking about their daily activities or plans for the future, as if nothing had happened.
But have you ever asked yourself whether all the plans you have made for the future have turned out as you wished?
To be realistic, things in our lives almost never turn out as we have planned. There is always something missing or something happens that we have not been expecting at that moment.
It is of course normal to make plans for the future, but the truth we must be aware of it is that our every moment is under the control of God. Everything is already over and done with in the sight of God, and our lives are shown to us moment by moment. Almighty God imparts a very great secret to us here. That secret involves the comfort of our living in full submission to our destiny, without worrying about the future. That is because God reveals this truth in the Qur’an as follows:
It may be that you hate something when it is good for you and it may be that you love something when it is bad for you. God knows and you do not know. (Surat al-Baqara, 216)
The idea that wasting time in trivia is enjoyable is a false idea inculcated by satan. Wasting time, or ‘killing time,’ as they put it, is very common in societies that do not live by religious values. Believers, however, must spend the time given to them by God on increasing their closeness to Him at every moment, on thinking deeply and on serving Muslims and Islam.
Actually time is very important, and more valuable than gold. One must make the best use of time. Instead of watching soaps for four or five hours, a Muslim would work on increasing his general culture and knowledge, help people, cleaning up his surroundings and making himself a quality person who values beauty, art and science.
Time, every moment, was very valuable to our Prophet (saas). He carefully used every minute – and even every second – for the benefit of the community and the Ummah. That is why our Prophet (saas) was troubled by people who wasted time.
It is important to make good use of time. One of people’s problems is that they become caught up in empty talk and waste a huge amount of time on it yet that ruthlessly wastes the valuable time of this valuable life. That is very wrong,
Everything in the Life of This World Comes to an End
People, animals, flowers, fruits and other foods -even though we keep them in the fridge: Everything in this world comes to an end. Endlessness is to be found in Paradise. Nothing comes to an end there. Youth never ends. People always remain young. When you pick a fruit from a tree in Paradise, another one grows back immediately. In this world we have to wait for the right season to eat the fruit we like; there is no time problem in Paradise. You spend all your time with those you love. You can do what you like as you like at any time. You can be as beautiful as you like. There is no disease or fatigue or boredom there. There is constant beauty. The life of this world however is the exact opposite. We always run up against deficiencies in the life of this world. We are never fully satisfied. When we obtain something we really want, such as a new phone, we experience the excitement of that, but then a new model comes out before long and we then want that instead.
Everyone will spend an allotted amount of time in this world, as part of the destiny created by God. Wasted time is therefore subtracted from the limited amount of time imparted in this world, and can never be brought back.
God is the Creator of All Things and All Beauty
God wishes to reward us with Paradise and its infinite delights. Our desire for and love of Paradise increases when we compare Paradise with the life of this world. In the same way that you can conjure up images of things by closing your eyes right where you are, God will constantly bring the most delightful versions of everything into being for all time in Paradise.
While it is possible to enjoy the comfort of destiny, leaving things to their own course, without worrying for the future, wasting time in distress and worries is meaningless. Instead, we must reflect on the many blessings created for us in this world, remember the true reason for our existence and shape our lives accordingly.
Every second, every minute, every hour that passes by draws us closer to death. The limited, short time we have been given in this world will define our actual place in the Hereafter for all eternity. Consequently making the best, truest use of time is the most rational thing to do. In the Qur’an, God informs us that the life of this world is transient;
“He will say, ‘How many years did you tarry on the earth?’
They will say, ‘We tarried there for a day or part of a day. Ask those able to count!’
He will say, ‘You only tarried there for a little while if you did but know!” (Surat al-Mu’minun, 112-114)
Someone who sincerely believes in God must carefully avoid empty occupations that satan portrays as highly attractive in the life of this world. Only in that way can someone reflect deeply as is due for one with a clear mind. The Qur’an reveals that believers turn away from empty occupations:
“And those who turn away from all that is frivolous.” (Surat al-Mu’minun, 3)
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