The month of Ramadan is an excellent opportunity for us to strengthen our faith and purify our character. The spirit of Ramadan encourages all Muslims to better themselves.
The Prophet (SAW) tells us: “When the month of Ramadan arrives, the gates of Heaven are opened, the gates of hell are locked, and the devils are chained.” [Sahih Muslim and Sunan al-Tirmidhi]
The month of Ramadan brings with it reduced temptation to do wrong as we are fasting and gives us a chance to show Allah our best potential.
So how do we maximize our good deeds and – insha Allah – our rewards this month? Here are a few ways:
Renew Your Relationship With the Quran
This is one of the best and easiest ways to earn a lot of blessings in Ramadan. Although we should read the Quran daily and never lose our connection with it, this recitation should increase many folds during the month of Ramadan.
In fact it is not only about reading the Quran, it is also very important to reflect on what is being read and ponder upon the lessons that it conveys to us.
The Quran is Allah’s word; it is just as if He is speaking to us. Allah says in the Quran, Surah Al-Jathiya, Verse 6:
These are Allah’s verses that We recite to you rightly…
The importance of reciting the Quran in Ramadan is indicated by the fact that Jibreel used to review the Quran with the Prophet (SAW) every Ramadan. [Sahihal-Bukhari]
Avoid Immoral Behavior and Increase Zikr
One of the most important changes that we need to bring to our lives is avoiding prohibited, immoral and useless behavior.
There are lots of things that we do now days that are not permissible and we do them thinking they are allowed. We should avoid these things not just in Ramadan but all the time.
During Ramadan, we should take extra care to avoid behavior that can nullify or reduce the rewards and benefits of fasting. These include lying, backbiting, anger, gossip, excessive television viewing and the likes. Rather, we should devote more time zikr of Allah. Tasbeeh, Quran, Salah should be our priority.
Another way to reap the blessings of Ramadan is to increase your generosity in this month. We should overcome our tendencies of being selfish and increase our charity.
According to Ibn `Abbas, the Prophet (SAW) was the most generous of all people, but he was no more generous than he was in Ramadan. [Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim]
Allah loves charity and what better month to do it in but Ramadan where all your good deeds are multiplied.
The Prophet (SAW) stated, “Whoever observes night prayer in Ramadan as an expression of his faith and to seek reward from Allah, his previous sins will be blotted out.“[Muslim]
Another easy way to earn lots of reward in Ramadan is by praying Taraweeh. Praying Taraweeh in Ramadan is a sunnah of the Prophet.
We should prepare ourselves for Taraweeh before hand and promise ourselves that we will pray taraweeh with the Jamaah every day in Ramadan.
This will increase the barakat of Ramadan for us and help us make the most of Ramadan.
Be Well-Mannered and Patient
Cultivating good manners should be another priority of ours, at all times of the year. However during Ramadan, the opposite is usually observed where hungry people lose all their tempers at the drop of a hat.
Good behavior and patience is a very integral part of fasting as fasting is supposed to instill patience in us Muslims and the month of Ramadan is the best time to develop this most essential quality.
May Allah guide us to becoming better Muslims and having the best Ramadan ever!