Repentance for neglecting prayer
Q: I am 38 years old man. till the age of 25 I did'nt prayed. please advice me what I have to do for this?
A: Praise be to Allaah.
Remember how Allaah has blessed you by bringing you back to Islam after you have been neglecting salaah, and keep on doing the prayers at the right times. Do more naafil (supererogatory or extra) prayers to make up for the fard (obligatory) prayers that you have missed, as was advised in the saheeh hadeeth narrated by Hurayth ibn Qubaysah, who said: "I came to Madeenah and prayed, 'O Allaah, send me a righteous companion.' I went and sat with Abu Hurayrah and said: 'I asked Allaah to bless me with a righteous companion; tell me a hadeeth that you heard from the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), so that I may benefit therefrom.' He said: 'I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say that: «the first thing for which a person will be brought to account on the Day of Resurrection will be his prayer. If it is sound, he will be successful, and if it is lacking in any way, he will be doomed. If his obligatory prayers are lacking, the Lord will say: "Look and see whether My slave has any voluntary prayers which may be used to make up what is lacking in his obligatory prayers." Then all his deeds will be examined and dealt with in the same way»" [Reported by al-Tirmidhi, no. 413; see also Saheeh al-Jaami', 2020].
Abu Dawood reported from Anas ibn Hakeem al-Dabbi that he came to Madeenah and met Abu Hurayrah. He said: "He asked me about my lineage so I told him about it, then he said: 'O young man, shall I not tell you a hadeeth?' I said, 'Of course, may Allaah have mercy on you,' and I think he mentioned it from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). He said: «The first thing that people will be asked about on the Day of Resurrection will be their prayers. Our Lord will say to His angels (although He knows best): "Look at My slave's prayers: are they complete or is something lacking?" If they are complete, they will be recorded as such, but if something is lacking, He will say: "Look and see if My slave has any voluntary prayers to his credit." If this proves to be the case, He will say: "Make up his (missing) obligatory prayers with his voluntary prayers." Then the rest of his deeds will be dealt with in the same manner»" [Saheeh al-Jaami', 2571].
Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid