As I carried out my daily scroll through Instagram a couple of days ago, I came across a post where a Pakistani Ahmadi addressed the attendees of Jalsa Salana UK. This was a heartfelt post, in which the author reminded us UK Ahmadis of how incredibly lucky and blessed we are to be able to attend this spiritual and mind enriching annual convention.

The author asked us to remember all our Ahmadi brothers and sisters around the world in our prayers, given we are able to physically attend a Jalsa which many can only watch via MTA and dream of attending one day. Those who have attended in the past, but are unable to do so this year, imagine the sadness they must feel.

I read the post once, twice and several times more and it caused me to ponder: do I truly appreciate how lucky I am?

It is a part of human nature to moan and groan about every minor inconvenience: a speck of mud on our clothes, the steady pour of light rain, queuing up for food or to use the toilet. But these are merely part and parcel of the Jalsa life.

Let us take a moment to truly think about the blessings that are present during Jalsa for us to grab and hold on to for a year, until the next annual convention.

Wonderful, well executed speeches of high quality content, words that will fill our minds with increased spiritual knowledge; melodious poems which bring tears to our eyes and the beautiful recitation of the Holy Quran, the words of our Maker recited aloud, tugging at our heart strings.

The best part of the Jalsa? We get to hear the wise, guiding words of our beloved Huzoor. He delivers his Friday sermon and addresses us again during the opening session. The following day, ladies are graced with Huzoor’s presence in the morning, and we listen to Huzoor’s report of the jamaat’s progress in the afternoon.

On Sunday, the much anticipated and awaited ba’ait ceremony takes places where we renew our pledge and allegiance to our beloved Imam, we pour our hearts into the sajdah, praying for forgiveness and ask Allah to take away our difficulties. Let us not forget that we are also able to partake in silent prayers, led by our Huzoor.

How incredibly blessed are we that we live in the country that hosts this Jalsa? How unbelievably fortunate we are to live only a few hours drive away from Hadeeqat-ul Mahdi.

Let us show our gratitude to Allah by making the most of the experience; those who are well and able, volunteer your time to make this Jalsa a complete success. Spend your spare time in the remembrance of Allah and in prayer. These are the days to read tahajjud in the early hours and nawafil prayers at every given opportunity.

Let us remember those less fortunate than us, those who yearn to be present at this Jalsa. Let us remember our fellow Ahmadis abroad, those in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia who are unable to practice their faith due to persecution.

Let us make the most of this wonderful Jalsa and show gratitude to Almighty Allah in the truest sense. Ameen.