Ramadan is only a week and a half away, and many of us have already begun researching healthy Iftar recipes, planning our Ramadan ‘ibadah routine, and getting our minds, hearts and bodies prepared for this blessed month.
As you are carrying out your Ramadan preparations, keep in mind the many Muslims around the world who are less fortunate than we are. Our Ramadan fasting experience will, in sha' Allah, be eased by the good Sahur and Iftar we eat daily, and once Ramadan is over, we will no longer be going hungry every day. However, many Muslims are unable to afford the nutritious food they need to sustain them after a hard day of fasting.
Whether they are refugees who have lost their homes and livelihoods, widows who are struggling to provide for their children, or families devastated by war and conflict, they will be going hungry well beyond iftar time.
The Prophet (saw) said, ‘Whoever feeds a person breaking his fast will earn the same reward as him, without anything being lessened from the reward of the fasting person’. (Tirmidhi)
Here are a few hadith about the importance of giving Iftar and why you shouldn’t miss out on its blessings:
Forgiveness for sins
In this month of seeking mercy and forgiveness, providing Iftar is the ideal way to maximise your efforts and get the most out of these 30 days.
This Ramadan, lose the weight of your sins by providing Iftar to the needy. Help us ensure that they stay nourished and healthy during this blessed month.
As well as serving cooked Iftar meals, we are also distributing Ramadan Family Food Parcels around the world, providing Iftar and Suhur to an entire family for the whole month of Ramadan.
The rewards are open to anyone
The Messenger of Allah (saw) said, '(O people!) Save yourselves from the (Hell) Fire even if it is with half a date (given in charity), and if you cannot find that, then (save yourselves by saying) a good word’. [Al-Bukhari & Muslim]
Some of us can’t afford to host big Iftar dinners, donate Iftar to the local masjid, or feed a poor family for the month. That doesn’t mean we have to miss out on the rewards of providing Iftar. The Prophet (saw) encouraged his Companions (ra) to give as much as they could, even if it was only a drink of water.
You can double the reward of your fast for as little as £1 per day - so don’t miss out! The most important thing is that you are sincere in seeking reward and forgiveness.
Get the kids involved!
Fasting the full day and staying up at night may be difficult for some of the younger kids, but we still want to get them involved in the ‘Ramadan spirit’ as much as possible. Asking them to help out with Iftar is a great way to get them involved in these incredible rewards.
Let your kids know that they gain the reward of fasting just by putting food and water on the table, or helping you prepare some of the Iftar. Alternatively, you can encourage them to donate some of their pocket money towards feeding a needy person Iftar. In sha’ Allah, this will teach them that their simple actions can make a difference and will help them feel a part of the ‘Ramadan experience’.
Take advantage of the blessings of giving Iftar from now! In sha’ Allah, you will gain the benefit of giving Sadaqah in Sha’ban - and reap the immense rewards in Ramadan.