What is ikhlas in loving?
We can love a lot of people, even our family and friends because of so many beautiful reasons.
If you love someone because of their physical looks or their shape, for example, later when they get old or when you are long enough with that person, you will find someone else far more beautiful than her/him.
If you love someone because of how soft that person is, and how gentle they are, and how sweet they are and just because of the personality he/she is, one day you will find that he/she also will become hard sometimes, and will become sensitive and offended, will mad and angry when they are tired, and at that time, you will find that, theres a lot of other guys/girls out there who are superior in their characters and manners than that person.
If you love someone because of their Deen, of how much they wake up tahajud everyday, for how much they post Islamic things in social media, for how much they recite and memorise Quran everyday, one day you will find that their Iman is also goes up and down, and sometimes they skip tahajud too, and sometimes they are tired in memorising and they need a break, and sometimes , just sometimes they didn't show you hence its not appearance of how much they connect with Allah, and at that time, you may find someone out there who are far more religious in your eyes than him/her.
If you love someone because of their status and popularity, and how much people say they are kind and nice, and how much they are known in the society, and how much that person is referred and being complemented, and how much people are amazed by her/his kindness and characters, one day, when you see that he/she crumbled up too, lose his/her spirit too, feeling demotivated too, and want to isolate from people too, and at that time, you will find that, there are many people who are more amazing, great and incredible than her/him.
If you love someone because of how much they love and want you, and show to you how much they need you and make your heart flattered, dear people, feeling changes, and heart is controlled by Allah and at that time you may feel as if there are a lot of other people out there who can love you better.
What is the reason to love people?
Simply the answer is no other reason than just because of Allah.
Loving people for the sake of Allah. In that solid reason, you would find that people make mistakes and hurt you sometimes unintentionally, people have mood changes and is inconsistent, people would not achieve all great things and they also have failures in life. That the people, human being is a weak creation of God and need Allah all the time. At that moment you realise, that you would support the one whom you love, no matter how hard the situation is.. why? Simply because of Allah. Simply for the sake of Allah. And this is what we called as ikhlas in loving.
How do we know if we are ikhlas in loving?
We would never know our ikhlas, our sincerity because ikhlas is only in the knowledge of Allah. Only Allah knew how much ikhlas you are in doing anything for the sake of Him. However, it would have shown by your actions. It would have shown when you tolerate towards your sisters and friends for example. It would have shown when you don't just leave your friend when your friend sometimes hurt you. It shows when you apologise to your friend for the sake of sahabat for Allah just so that you didn't lose this friendship.
Rasulullah said, narrated in a sahih hadith, for those people who love each other just for the sake of Allah, for them shall be shade and shield of Allah on the day of Judgement. MashaAllah. How much is that rewards ya Rabb? So much ya Rabb.. :') Why it is so much ya Rabb? Because Allah said so in Surah Ar Rahman...
'What is the reward of excellence other than excellence?'
We ask You so that You grant us ikhlas in everything that we do, ikhlas in loving people for the sake of You, and we ask You to be granted people whom love us ikhlas and sincerely because of You ya Rabb, here in duniya and hereafter in Jannah.
Ameen ya Allah.