What do you make of the amazing incident when the best of the sahaba (رضالله عنه) came to the best of the Prophets (صلي الله عليه وسلم) to ask for a du’a to make in his prayers?

Narrated Abu Bakr As-Siddiq (رضالله عنه)

I asked Allah’s Apostle (صلي الله عليه وسلم) to teach me an invocation so that I may invoke Allah with it in my prayer. He told me to say,

Abu Bakr’s Du’a

[Sahih Bukhari]

(Hover your mouse over each line to see the translation)

Allahumma innee thhalamtu nafsi thulman katheera

Wa laa yaghfiru thunooba illa anta faghfirlee

Maghfiratam min ‘indika war-hamni innaka

Anta Al-Ghafoor, Ar-Raheem

So what’s so special about this du’a?

For starters, the one who requested the du’a is the best of all the companions of the Prophet (صلي الله عليه وسلم) – Abu Bakr (رضالله عنه). The one who entertained the request is the seal of the Prophets and the leader of mankind (صلي الله عليه وسلم). So this du’a was given to the best, by the best…and what is the content of the du’a?

“Oh Allah! I have wronged myself greatly!”

Subhan Allah! If Muhammad (صلي الله عليه وسلم) and Abu Bakr (رضالله عنه) have wronged themselves greatly, where do we stand? If the two of the finest of Allah’s creation: the first being the leader of mankind (صلي الله عليه وسلم), the other whose eman is heavier than the eman of the entire ummah combined (رضالله عنه). If they have wronged themselves and they were so adamant in seeking the forgiveness of Allah and begging for the mercy of Allah then really, where do we stand?

How much more have we wronged ourselves in comparison to Rasoolullah (صلي الله عليه وسلم) and Abu Bakr (رضالله عنه), yet we don’t have the same drive to ask Allah’s forgiveness and Allah’s mercy!

We should make it a habit of making this du’a in our prayers after tashahhud (i.e. when sitting at the end of the prayer), and at other times too. May Allah forgive us our sins and bestow upon us His Mercy, ameen.