Attaining the reward of Laylat Al-Qadr
How can a person attain [the reward] of Laylat Al-Qadr?
The Divine wisdom decrees that Laylat Al-Qadr [the Night of Power] be concealed during [the other days of] Ramadan. The reason is to encourage the fasting person to strive in seeking it, especially in the last ten days of the month and awaken his family [for prayers] as the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to do in the hope of attaining this night of which God the Almighty says in the Quran: “The Night of Power is better than a thousand months. The angels and the Spirit descend therein by permission of their Lord for every matter. Peace it is until the emergence of dawn” (97: 3-5).
By seeking Laylat Al-Qadr, a person attains its honor in this life and the pleasure of God Almighty in both this world and in the hereafter. For this reason, God Almighty has concealed this night among the other nights of Ramadan to encourage those who are fasting to increase their good deeds during the month.
The time of Laylat Al-Qadr
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to strive in seeking Laylat Al-Qadr during the last ten nights of Ramadan. Scholars differed regarding its date; in view of this scholarly controversy, a Muslim must not relax his efforts in seeking it on the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan.
Hadith on the virtue of attaining Laylat al-Qadr
Abu Huraira (may God be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: "He who spends the night in prayer, as a sign of his faith and in anticipation of its reward, will have his previous sins forgiven" (recorded by Bukhari and Muslim).
Supplication recommended for this night
Aisha (may God be pleased with her) said that she asked the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him): "O Messenger of God! If [my prayers] coincide with Laylat Al-Qadr, how should I supplicate God?" He replied: "Say, 'O God! You are oft-relenting and love to forgive, so forgive me" (recorded by Al-Tirmidhi. Al-Nisa`i, Ibn Majah, Ahmed, and Al-Hakem declared it authentic).
And God Almighty knows best.