January 27, 2011

Sunnah of Childcare: Seeking Protection

MashaAllah, parents go to great lengths to try and protect their children. They stake out neighborhoods for potentially dangerous elements, interview school yard friends to weed out negative influences, and cover every sharp corner of the house in plastic to lessen the hurt from the falls their children may take.

But in this great effort to provide protection, a parent's ability can only go so far. After all, we're only human. And as humans, we can never know what the future will bring or what dangers of the unseen lie waiting for us. To truly protect our children from the evils of this world, both seen and unseen, we must continuously seek the aid of Allah, azza wa jal. Like the Prophet, sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam taught, "Wa laa hawla wa laa quwwata 'illaa billaah." There is no power and no might except by Allah.--Ahmad, with an authentic chain

In the Qur'an, we are given examples of believers supplicating to Allah for their children's protection and right upbringing. In Surah Al-Imran, we are told of the dua'a that the mother of Maryam made.

"Then when she gave birth to her child (Maryam), she said: 'O My Lord! I have given birth to a female child,'--and Allah knew better what she brought forth,--'And the male is not like the female, and I have named her Maryam (Mary), and I seek refuge with You (Allah) for her and for her offspring from Shaitan (Satan), the outcast."--3:36

In Surah Ibrahim, Allah tells us how Prophet Ibrahim, alayhi salaam, sought refuge for his sons' safety and adherence to the religion:
"And remember when Ibrahim said: 'O My Lord! Make this city (Mecca) one of peace and security, and keep me and my sons away from worshiping idols.'" --14:35

"O my Lord! Make me one that establishes the prayer, and (also the same) for my offspring, our Lord, and accept my invocation." --14:40

Prophet Zakariyya, alayhi salaam, also sought Allah's aid in raising his children:
"He says: 'My Lord! Grant me the power and ability that I may be grateful for Your Favor which You have bestowed upon me and upon my parents, and that I may do righteous good deeds, such as please You, and make my offspring good. Truly, I have turned to you in repentance, and truly I am one of the Muslims." --46:15

From the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam, we see that he sought refuge in Allah for his two grandsons, Hasan and Husayn. It's recorded in both Bukhari and Muslim that the Prophet used to supplicate, saying: "I seek refuge in Allah for the two of you through the perfect words of Allah from every devil and poisonous pest, and from every evil (envious) eye." 

MashaAllah, such beautiful examples from the best of believers in Allah. Alhamdulilah that Allah gave us the ability to do what we can for our children, so inshaAllah we'll continue buying the knee pads, the play mats, and bicycle helmets. But let us also never forget that there is no power and no might except by Allah.

Wa laa hawla wa laa quwwata 'illaa billaah. 

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