The Prophet used to invoke Allah The Exalted saying:
“Allahumma anta rabbi la ilaaha illa ant, khalaqtani wa ana ‘abduk, wa ana ‘ala ‘ahdika wa wa‘dika mastata‘t, a‘oothu bika min sharri maa sana‘t, aboo’u laka bini‘matika, wa aboo’u laka bithanbi faghfir lee fa innahoo la yaghfiru ath-thunooba illa ant.
(O Allah, You are my Lord, there is none worthy of worship except You. You Created me and I am Your slave; and I abide by Your Covenant and Promise as best I can. I take refuge in You from the evil that I committed and I am grateful to You for the blessing that You Conferred on me. I acknowledge my sin, so forgive me, for verily none can forgive sins except You).”[Al-Bukhari]
The Prophet also said,
“Allahumma inni a‘oothu bika min ash shiqaaqi wan nifaaqi wa soo’u al akhlaaq
(O Allah, I seek refuge with you from dissension, hypocrisy and bad morals).”[An-Nasaa’i]
• Avoiding exaggeration in making an invocation rhyme: A Muslim should not exaggerate in making a supplication rhyme because this is a state of humility and submissiveness. Ibn ‘Abbaas, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “Avoid rhymes in supplication for the Prophet and his Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, used to avoid it.”[Al-Bukhari]
Some of the righteous people said, “Invoke Allah The Exalted with a humble and mild tongue, not one that is eloquent and quick.”
• Invoking Allah The Almighty for one’s self and then for others. Allah The Almighty Says (what means):
“Our Lord, Forgive us and our brothers who preceded us in faith and Put not in our hearts [any] resentment toward those who have believed. Our Lord, indeed You are Kind and Merciful.”
The Prophet used to invoke Allah The Almighty for himself first before invoking Him for any other person.[At-Tirmithi]
• Avoiding supplicating Allah The Almighty against one’s self, family, wealth or children. The Prophet said,
“Do not supplicate Allah against yourselves, your children or your wealth.”[Muslim]
• Supplicating Allah The Exalted for fellow brothers in their absence. The Messenger of Allah said,
“The supplication of a Muslim for another Muslim in his absence is accepted by Allah. He has an appointed angel at his head and every time he supplicates good for his brother, the angel would say: “Aameen and for you the same.”
• Invoking Allah The Almighty for whoever does you a favor. The Prophet said,
“If a favor is performed for someone and he says to the one who performed it, ‘May Allah Reward you.’ He would be rewarding him perfectly.”[At-Tirmithi and An-Nasaa’i]
The Prophet also said,
“Whoever does you a favor, reward him for it. And if you cannot find the means of doing so, then keep supplicating for him until you think that you have rewarded him adequately.”[Abu Daawood and An-Nasaa’i]
• Asking righteous people for supplications. A Muslim should ask his fellow brothers to supplicate Allah The Almighty for him especially the righteous people.
It was narrated that ‘Umar ibn Al-Khattaab, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “I asked the Prophet for permission to perform ‘Umrah and he granted it to me and said, ‘O brother, remember us in your supplication and do not forget us.’ The words he said pleased me more than could all that is in the life of this world.”
• Avoiding supplicating Allah The Almighty for a sin or the severance of kinship. The Prophet said:
“A servant shall continue to have his supplications answered so long as he does not supplicate for sins or the severance of kinship.”[Muslim]
• Remembering Allah The Exalted, obeying Him and performing good deeds. Being conscious of Allah The Exalted, diligent on performing acts of worship, abandoning sins and evils and hastening to repentance makes supplication more likely to be answered. Allah The Almighty Says (what means):
“Indeed, Allah only Accepts from the righteous [who fear Him].”
It was narrated that Allah The Almighty said in the Qudsi Hadeeth,
“Whoever keeps himself busy with the Quran and remembering Me, I Will Give him the best of all those who ask of Me.”[At-Tirmithi]
• Being keen on having lawful sustenance. The Prophet said,
“O people, Allah Is Good and He Accepts only that which is good. And Allah Commanded the believers as He Commanded the Messengers by saying (what means):
“O messengers, eat from the good foods and work righteousness. Indeed, I, of what you do, Am Knowing.”
And He Says (what means):
“O you who have believed, eat from the good things which We have provided for you and be grateful to Allah if it is [indeed] Him that you worship.”
He then mentioned (the case of) a man who has travelled a long distance – unkempt and dusty – and raises his hands towards the heavens and says: ‘O Lord, O Lord, while his food, drink, clothing are from unlawful means and he is fed with unlawful food. Then how could his supplication be answered?”
Ibraaheem ibn Adham was once asked, “Why are our supplications to Allah The Exalted not answered?” He answered, “Because your hearts have died due to ten things.”
“1- You know Allah The Almighty but do not obey Him.
2- You know the Prophet but do not follow his Sunnah (tradition).
3- You recite the Quran but do not act upon it.
4- You enjoy the Blessings of Allah The Exalted without giving thanks.
5- You know of Paradise but do not exert any effort to enter it.
6- You know of Hell but you do not exert any effort to escape it.
7- You know of Satan but do not oppose him.
8- You know of death but do not prepare for it.
9- You bury your dead but do not learn from their example.
10- And in your state of slumber, you focus your attention on the shortcomings of others while neglecting your own.”