I See, I Do

16

Childhood experiences often have a lasting impact on us, even if we don’t understand the significance of these events until we are much older.  In some cases, our relished childhood can help us figure out the role we play in the community.

Where I grew up, there were two sisters I used to look up to. Being in grade two, the Mosque was where I would get my religious inspiration. We had camps in the summer where we would pick berries and make fresh jam. We would gather at the Mosque on ‘Eid, young and old alike, and pray together. We would attended weddings together. We fasted Ramadan together. And most importantly, we learned our deen together. The best encouragement for that were these two sisters who caught my little eyes.

Whenever I would see either of them, my first thoughts would be ‘I want to be just like her!’ SubhanAllah, they inspired me in more ways than I can count. I remember one, specifically the way she wore her hijab, the smile she had for every person, the way she was so kind. Wherever I would see her, she would always be kindly smiling, so affectionately that it was like a flower giving a beautiful fragrance to every thing in her vicinity. The other was my Qur’an teacher’s daughter. She was the same, having the sweetest manners and always wrapping her hijab so nicely. I remember her making wudhu’ once and afterwards wanting to do exactly as she did.

After seeing both of them wearing hijab, I wanted to wear hijab as well. I wanted to wrap my hijab just like them, wear the same colors as them, and especially, act just like them. Neither one of them ever lectured me with regards to religion. We never even had a talk on religion, seeing as I moved after grade three. It was their actions and mannerisms that inspired me. I was in their company. I saw how they acted in the Mosuqe and outside. Being young, I didn’t know why they did what they did, but I wanted to do it because the little me knew that it was something good.

I haven’t seen them since I’ve moved. I’ve even forgotten their names. Yet I still remember their faces, and their actions are forever imprinted in my heart. I can make du’aa for them and thank Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala for giving me the inspiration to follow the deen. What happens now? I had my role models. Now I have to become the role model. There are little girls looking at every action I make in the Mosque. They look at every move I make and copy it, regardless of whether or not they know it is correct. At a young age, kids copy everything they see. Later on, they can research and understand why they do it. But if at that young age, I inspire a child to do wrong, who will get the punishment for it? I will. But if I inspire a child to do good, without even knowing it, who will get the reward for it? I will.

So sisters, know that every action you take is being watched by someone, and if not by a person, then by Allah Al Baseer Himself. Know that if you inspire someone to come closer to the deen, it will be better for you than anything this world has to offer. Know that the best thing you can do for yourself is come closer to Allah. Know that the best way to give da’wah is not by lecturing, but by your own actions. Know that the little girl with shy eyes looking at you from the corner of the Mosque isn’t looking for a speech—she’s looking for a role model. And that role model, in her eyes, might already be you.

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