By Jenan Jondy
Sometimes we look at dawa as bringing people together for dinner or giving an informative talk, we take the typical route of â€˜God saysâ€™ and â€˜His Prophet saidâ€™ (s), yet we forget that our sincere actions are pure impact.
The second annual FIC Healing Flint: of Goodness to Goodness family conference was held on September 27 & 28th, bringing together Muslims from the Flint area and across Michigan. Imam Siraj Wahhaj, Imam Suhaib Webb, Imam Mohamed Magid, Shakh Abdullah Waheed and Iyad AlNachef were some of the scheduled speakers. The conference focused on issues impacting youth, family and our city. Youth presenters spoke on local concerns such as the economy, school consolidations and closures and the effects of an emergency manager.
Young people also took time to discuss and think about how our everyday decisions can impact and create the very culture we live in. One of the key elements in building awareness i8s to motivate and mobilize the community into action after beginning to understand the problems faced.
There is a tendency to point fingers and label our problems as â€˜corruptionâ€™ or even the denial of their existence, making it easier to look away. Remember the warring factions in Medina? The Prophet (s) taught the people as HIS people, never was the Prophet (s) an outsider looking in. Rather, he was creating solutions for real everyday problems that arose amongst his people. The result was thousands upon thousands of people entered Islam during the lifetime of the Prophet (s), changing the world that we know today.
Imam Mohamed Magid spoke to the participants on the rewards of ihsan, giving a challenge to do and say good to others for forty days. If you are to slip up, then the forty days would need to begin once again – providing a platform to build individual character and compassion between people. Prior to the conference, Iyad Alnachef held focus groups for area youth; at the same time, volunteers collected data from surveys that were later discussed at the conference to help understand the challenges faced by a wide range of youth in the greater Flint area.
Issues, concerns, ideas, discussions, and conversations were surrounded with a family friendly environment. A structured child-care program took children to visit animatronic dinosaurs, a petting zoo and a build-it room where children could use their imagination to twist and connect straws into works of art. Local artists had the opportunity to display their pieces of art for the community to admire and purchase if they wished. Participants challenged on another to ping pong, air hockey, foosball, and pinball, creating an environment of camaraderie. Others took the time to visit the bazaar or ate in the food court.
Healing Flint was and is about healing our hearts and relationship with Allah (s) and others, it is about taking real action for our people and city. Letâ€™s take dawa back to the time of the Prophet (s) and impact the everyday lives of the many who live with and around us.
What comes from the heart will only enter hearts. Ihsan. Take action.