One Ayah Changed My Life
Al-Fudayl ibn ‘Iyaad was famous for his piety and worship, but he was not always a practising Muslim. In his early years, Al-Fudayl was an infamous highway robber; he would prowl in the night for victims on the road from Abu Ward to Sarakhas. Between these two cities was a small village in which lived a girl that Al-Fudayl was in love with. One night, out of desperation to be with her, Al-Fudayl climbed the wall of her home. As he was climbing over it, he heard a voice recite:”Has the time not come for those who have believed that their hearts should become humbly submissive at the remembrance of Allah…” Surah Al-Ḥadeed 57, Ayah 16.
At that moment, Al-Fudayl answered, “O my Lord, the time has indeed come.” He returned from where he came and sought refuge near a travelling party on the main road. They were busy engaging in a serious discussion. Al-Fudayl heard one of them say, “Let us continue our journey now.” Another answered, “No, not until the morning, for Al-Fudayl is lurking on the road somewhere out there, just waiting to rob us.”
Having heard the entire conversation, Al-Fudayl thought to himself,
“I go around in the night to sin, while a group of Muslims remain here because they fear me. Indeed I feel that Allah has brought me here to them only so that I can reform my character. O Allah, I indeed repent to you!”