The gift of time is a very precious favour of Allāh ta‘ālā. It is a favour we can neither store nor stop from passing. This is why we say, ‘Time waits for no one.’ A similitude for time and life is a block of ice melting away, slowly, minute by minute, second by second, breath by breath. Yet one stark difference between the two is that it is possible to put ice back in the freezer, but nothing can freeze our lives. Thus, life is an asset that needs to be utilised now.
Upon close observation of our own lives, we will find that there are many activities which rob us of our time. Let us take football as an example; just ponder for a minute, how many people in the world today spend hour after hour of their precious time watching football games? What tangible benefit do we get from just watching football? Seldom do we have a conversation that is void of this topic. Just imagine, during only one season or during a single World Cup campaign, how much of our lives are wasted behind football? How much time do we waste in talking about football, watching football, listening to football commentaries and thinking about football? How much time do we devote to these activities and how much time do we devote to Allāh ta‘ālā? How much time do we spend pursuing religious or secular knowledge that will benefit us, in helping those who are less fortunate and less privileged than us, in helping the needy and the disabled, or in other ways of making a positive contribution to the communities in which we live?
Football is just one example; there are many other robbers of time: engaging in futile conversations and gossip, spending hours on shisha, discussing politics without any practical outcome, etc.
Let us all value time and utilise it in something fruitful, for a day is coming when we will be made to stand in the Court of Allāh ta‘ālā and be questioned about how we spent each and every moment of our lives.