Reflection No. 160 on Q 19:4 – Certainty in supplication

وَلَمْ أَكُنْ بِدُعَائِكَ رَبِّ شَقِيًّا

walam akum bidu‘āki rabbi shaqiyya
And never have I been disappointed, my Lord, in my supplication to You.
(Sūrat Maryam, No. 19, Āyat 4)

When a believer supplicates and prays to Allah, he prays with full conviction that Allah will hear and answer. The answer may not always come in ways he expects, but the answer does come nonetheless. In the Du‘ās that we recite for the month of Rajab, we say ‘Every wish asked of You is heard readily and provided with an answer (Du‘ā No.2, A‘maal of Rajab and Sha‘bān)

The verse above is the prayer of Nabī Zakariyā (a) when he asks for a child. He prays to Allah, mentioning his weakness, and telling God of his hopes in Him. I am old and feeble, he says, and my hair has turned white. It seems unlikely that I can now have a child. But I am praying to you and have certainty that you will answer my prayer. I have never been disappointed and unhappy before, and I do not expect to be disappointed now

This type of certainty in supplicating to God has a very calming effect. It is as though you have entrusted Him with your request, and know that it is now in safe hands. You do not have to worry about it anymore. Whatever and whenever answer Allah, subHānahū wa-ta‘ālā, decides to give will be the best for you. It is a conviction that strengthens and paves the way for success. Imam Ali (a) says: Whoever has certainty is successful. (Ghurarul Hikam, H. 738)

To pray with such certainty, sincere faith and hope is to pray expecting success. That is the secret. If you are positive and expect success, success is bound to come your way. Allah will act with His servant according to his expectations of Him. Have high hopes of Him, be confident and expect the best from Him, and you will see how your prayers will be answered in unforeseen ways.

Recite this verse after you have asked for your wishes, and remember the supplication of Nabī Zakariyā (a). Take inspiration from him and follow his etiquette and sincerity of praying. You will surely not be disappointed.

For those who cannot fast in Rajab
As we approach the 13th of Rajab, Mu’minīn worldwide prepare to celebrate the birth anniversary of Amīrul Mu’minīn Ali bin Abī Tālib (a). They also participate in fasting on the ‘Bright Days’ of the month from the 13th to the 15th of Rajab, followed by performing A‘māl of Umm Dāwūd taught by Imam al-Sādiq (a). However, there are some who cannot fast on these days due to sickness, travel, etc. It is recommended to recite following tasbīh 100 times [or as many times as possible] for those who cannot fast in any day of Rajab.

subHānal-ilāhil-jalīl, subHāna mal-lā yambaghīt-tasbīHa illā lah,
subHānal-a‘azzil-akram, subHāna man labisal-‘izzu wa-huwa lahu ahl.
Glory be to Allah, the Sublime; Glory be to One who alone deserves glorification
Glory be to the Honorable, the Generous;
Glory be to One who has worn the robe of honor and He deserves it.

Sources: Āytaullāh Nāsir Makārim Shirāzī (ed), Tafsīr-e Namūneh; Amīrul Mu’minīn Ali bin Abī Tālib, Ghurarul Hikam; Amaal of Rajab and Sha‘bān, Tayyiba Publishers