Being resolute in worship
He is Lord of the heavens and the earth and everything in between them, so worship Him and persevere in His worship. Do you know of any other with His Name? (Surah Maryam; 65)
"To be resolute" is to be firm in purpose and persistent therein. Allah orders Muslims not only to perform acts of worship, but also to be resolute in performing them.
AHowever, some people tend to limit the concept of being resolute in worship to certain obligatory acts such as regular prayer, giving alms, fasting or pilgrimage. Of course believers are supposed to perform these acts of worship in a complete and perfect manner. In its true sense, however, worship means "being a servant." That is, a person's attitudes, behavior and whatever they do to serve Allah are all acts of worship. Compliance with what is ordered in the Qur'an comprises many important obligatory acts of worship, and is in itself an act of worship. Actions such as performing prayer five times a day, controlling one's temper, speaking gently and kindly, warning people of the Hereafter, avoiding wicked thoughts and refraining from pointless dispute are all obligatory acts of worship. Therefore, this commandment refers to both the physical acts of worship and the moral excellence that a believer adopts for himself.
However, the resoluteness of Muslims will be put to test. Stories of prophets and believers of the past portray events by which their perseverance was tested. Trying times are shown to be invaluable opportunities to demonstrate a Muslim's loyalty to Allah.
The verbal and physical attacks of unbelievers are among the occurrences through which a Muslim's loyalty to his religion is tested. Disease, thirst, starvation, exhaustion, threats and life-endangering situations are also tests for believers. There will be many times when a Muslim must persevere to live by the moral values of Islam.
There are also times when Allah grants believers such favors as health, strength, wealth or power. These, too, are invaluable opportunities through which they can demonstrate their commitment to the religion of Allah. That is, Muslims will be tested with both hardship and ease, yet neither should make them deviate from righteous conduct.
Warning of punishment
The basic philosophy of a society which does not live by the values of the Qur'an is that man is responsible to himself alone. According to that superstitious way of thinking, man needs only to provide the best conditions for himself and surround himself with the most comfortable environment he can. He assumes no responsibility whatsoever toward the lives of others. This being the case, most people assume they are accountable only for their own adherence to religious values and thus distance themselves from any responsibility for communicating Allah's message to others. From the Qur'anic viewpoint, however, the reality is quite different.
Among a Muslim's responsibilities is to convey the religion of Islam to the people around him and encourage them to believe in Allah. In the Qur'an, Allah reveals this in the words:
You who are enveloped in your cloak! Arise and warn. (Surat al- Muddaththir; 1-2)
Every Muslim is also responsible for calling others to Islam. The believer wants everyone to share his contentment in Islam. His objective is to communicate the existence of Allah to everyone, make people aware that they will be called to account in the Hereafter and describe how Hell is a true place of torment for those who fail to obey Allah's commandments. For a Muslim, these duties are far more important than commerce, comfort or entertainment. In order to communicate Allah's religion to people, they do whatever it takes, even if it means abandoning home or possessions. In the Qur'an, Allah addresses His Prophet (saas) and all believers, saying:
Warn them of the Day of Bitter Regret when the affair will be resolved. But they take no notice. They have no faith. (Surah Maryam; 39)
Prayers that believers should recite at least once in their lives
Allah reveals what Muslims should pray for in many verses of the Qur'an. Prayer leads us to that which already exists in our destinies. It is Allah Who both determines our destiny and Who causes us to pray. Prayer is one of the most important religious observances for a Muslim. A believer who prays knows his weakness before Allah and always submits himself to Him. In return for his prayers he may hope to be a valued servant possessed of taqwa in the Sight of Allah. In one verse Allah reveals:
"Say: 'What has My Lord to do with you if you do not call on Him? ..." (Surat al-Furqan, 77)
This chapter contains some of the prayers revealed in the Qur'an that believers should recite at least once in their lives.