I have decided to share with you in my blog some of my answers to questions I receive in the ask.fm website. I received the following question: “Any tips on how to get up for Fajr prayer? I find it so difficult and feel guilty for missing it every time!”
First of all, What do we mean by Fajr Prayer, I will quote from Wikipedia: “The Fajr prayer "Dawn prayer" is the first of the five daily prayers offered by practicing Muslims. (Fajr means dawn in the Arabic language.) The five daily prayers collectively form one pillar of the Five Pillars of Islam”. Remember the things which seem can't be changed, can actually end sometimes or they change us instead. My number one tip is to have a great faith, As described in my previous posts on how to increase our faith. Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase. Faith activates the fact in our hearts that something greater than us exists, a Supreme God beyond any imaginations.
Once human activates the thoughts that this prayer is an appointment to worship our God, the same God we love, the same God we fear, the same God that gave us everything we asked for, the same God that created the great heavens above, and the amazing ground we step our feet on. Waking up to pray for that Supreme God is something not to be missed for those who still have the essential feeling of Human being and that is Love. As we all Muslims know: “No Salat is more burdensome to the hypocrites than the Fajr (dawn) prayer and the `Isha' (night) prayer; and if they knew their merits, they would come to them even if they had to crawl to do so” according to our Prophet Mohammed (Peace and Prayer be upon him). Why it’s burdensome, because they lack the love for God!
If I told you there are treasures hidden for you in close by city, wouldn’t you do everything you could to obtain the treasure? Our beloved Prophet Mohammed (Peace and Prayer be upon him) said: “The two (Sunnah) rakahs of Fajr are better than this world and all it contains.” This is the Sunnah prayer before Al Fajr and yet the prophet said better than this world, can you imagine how great is the Fajr Prayer? Don’t wake up because you think it’s a responsibility and you must get rid of, instead you wake up because you are fully aware that the one who is putting effort to wake up at an early time of the day to pray for someone who really deserves to be loved and worshiped for all countless blessings he is showering humanity. Without intention everything we do might be hard and useless, try to have a firm intention in your heart that you will wake up for Fajr no matter what. Don’t ever forget that the purpose of us being alive in this world to worship Allah. If you can easily lift 20 KGs is it really that hard to lift the blanket you are covering yourself with while sleeping?
We set our alarm to wake up for work, we love our work, the salary we get at the end of the month, or we might be scared of that boss who would scold us if we are late, so we struggle but we wake up. Remember you are doing this for another human being who might be better than you or worse or the same, anyway you are just doing it for another human being. Remember Fajr prayer is a responsibility given to you by the Supreme God, the reward of Good prayer might be the Paradise, the punishment for not praying might be Hell, you do the math! Oh dear Muslim, we wake up at such time to be blessed, when you wake up with that intent, I mean focusing on getting blessed by Allah and worshiping him alone, be sure that God will bless you in abundance.
A great aid in waking up for Fajr prayer is to perform those acts which are Sunnah prior to going to sleep like: sleeping with wudhu (The Islamic procedure for washing parts of the body using water). Allah said in the The Quran: "For Allah loves those who turn to Him constantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure and clean” Recite the sleeping Dua’a and Athkars. Try not to have any heavy meals in the evening as this will make it harder for you to wake up for Fajr, remember the more you eat at night, the more what you ate eats and weaken your soul and heart. One of the best way to easily wake up is to encourage your family to also wake up for Fajr and tell them of the importance of the prayer.
If your family wake up for Fajr then it will also be easier for you as they would also wake you up. I once read a quote written by someone: “Family means no one gets left behind or forgotten.” If one or two of your family members do wake up for Fajr then tell them to also wake you up. Use alarms, don't be tricked by the devil that I will continue sleeping for few minutes then I will wake up. As soon as the eyes are open then go straight to the bathroom and prepare yourself.
Oh Muslim, remember one of the greatest and strongest weapons you own. You have “Prayers”. Ask of Allah in your prayer to make it easy for you to wake up for Fajr prayer, didn’t God promised us in the Quran he will answer for those who prayed to him sincerely... Finally remember once you hear the (Athan) call of the prayer, it might be the last time you hear it in your life, it might be the last opportunity, the last chance before we find ourselves 6 feet under the ground…. May Allah enable us to pray every prayer on its appointed time...