As you are born into a Muslim family, you are indeed a Muslim, even though you have not practised prayer, or fasting or anything else. Your identity is Islam, and you believed in Almighty God and His Messenger.
By you repenting to Almighty God for your shortcomings, and turning to practicing Islam, your sins will be forgiven and indeed wiped away.
Of course, you will need to put extra effort in realising how important it is for you to practice your faith, and change certain things that you might have been accustomed to. You will soon see the fruits of faith and your spiritual side will excel. All this must be based on a good strong foundation, by educating yourself about the precepts of Islam. Study the fundamentals of your religion, and learn the best you can from reliable sources. This will further strengthen your faith and you will do things out of absolute conviction.
With prayers for your success.
Some Muslims pray but with out understanding the message of Prayers and don't obey the Prophet (SAWA), like the Kharijites of that time and ISIS of today.
Real Prayer which purifies us is performed with humble obedience of Allah (SWT) and the Prophet (SAWA) and Ahlul Bayt (AS).
My understanding of this is that it is with respect to spiritual matters, particularly the spiritual position of Ahl al-Bayt (A) in that if some people who did not have an understanding of this heard some people talking about it openly, they might react negatively due to ignorance.
Two suggestions are:
* Qur'anic du'as, such as Qur'an 3:8.
* Spending time with believers (that is, Muslims who appear to have genuine faith and demonstrate good character, and who conduct themselves in a way that embodies the values of the Qur'an) and prioritizing living in an area with a strong and healthy Muslim community - ideally, somewhere where one can attend congregational prayers often. We become like those whom we spend time with.
I am sure there are some other good suggestions that will be mentioned too.
Every Muslim is responsible to teach his/her children the True Faith in Allah, the Prophet (SAWA) and Ahlul Bayt (AS). Shia wife must do whatever she can to teach her kids the Truth about Islam of the Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) and Ahlul Bayt (AS). Allah knows her abilities and she must use all her abilities in this regard.
When you pray all the obligatory Prayers and fast the month of Ramadan, it means that you definitely have faith in Allah in your heart. You might have had some doubts or wrong thoughts which are not been dealt with properly and not been cleared yet. Such thoughts might make you think that you lost your faith in religion but in fact you did not.
These are few important points which usually help in similar cases:
1. Be very frank with your doubts and never suppress any question but face it and discuss it by evidence, reason and logic taken from authentic knowledgeable scholars.
2. Don't fear any question and have self confidence that you will find the real answers in the book of Allah and the sayings of the Prophet (SAWA) and his holy Progeny Ahlul Bayt (AS).
3. Seek more guided knowledge from authentic sincere scholars (Ulama) who have experience in similar cases of doubts and questions.
4. Recite Quran with voice which you can hear and try to understand and ponder on its meanings.
5. Recite the sayings of the Prophet and Ahlul Bayt especially in Nahjul Balagha on the subjects of your question. No doubt, the wisdom of the Prophet and Ahlul Bayt (AS) is the best wisdom for any human being who seeks the truth.
The believers are purified by hardships and tests to remove their errors and raise their degrees in Paradise. The Hadeeth says: More tests come with more faith كلما زيد في ايمانه زيد في بلائه
More hardships and tests make the believer more remembering Allah and seeking His help and avoid the believer the feeling of pride or arrogance.
There are many Hadeeths that the the believer who struggles in this life for noble cause, will be more rewarded in the hereafter. We read in Quran: Those who face the hardships with patience (Sabr) for the sake of Allah will have countless reward (Sura 39, verse 10).
We also have Hadeeths that the status of Sabr ( patience) from Faith is like the status of the head from the body.
Not at all. Blind faith with out evidence is not accepted in Islam.
The following article will give you a good explanation of this:
May Allah grant you success
You have the choice to convert in secret, or to convert and tell them.
What is best to do really depends on your situation and on your relationship with your parents. If you have a close relationship, and they would be hurt if you don't tell them, or if they found out by accident, it might be good to tell them sooner rather than later. If you think it would just cause problems for yourself, needlessly hurt them, or endanger you (for instance, put you at risk of being kicked out), then maybe it is better to wait.
If you think you will be living a more independent life soon (for instance, living on campus at a university, or working and living on your own), it might not hurt to wait and tell them when you have more control over your life.
However, eventually you will (probably) have to deal with it. Although it might cause conflict and tension in the beginning, the best-case scenario to hope for is that it could eventually lead to mutual understanding. The real question here is when to go through that, and that is something you have to decide for yourself.
Also, keep in mind that it is difficult to keep secrets, and people often sense what we are hiding or find out accidentally.
It is nice and humble to focus on service. Some people do feel called to serve communities other than their own, and I have met some people who are not Muslim who dedicated their lives to working for Muslim communities or the Islamic cause. Sometimes it is a lifelong calling, and sometimes it is a temporary calling (for instance, on a specific sociopolitical issue that one feels strongly about, or as a stepping stone to discovering one's identity or beliefs).
That being said, the psychological motivations behind dedicating one's self to service (especially to serving the "other") can be complex. There are psychologically healthy and unhealthy reasons for service. For instance, a genuine desire to help someone in need, versus the desire to feel needed. Wishing to aid those who are marginalized, versus re-living unresolved psychological trauma surrounding feelings of non-belonging. Etc.
For that reason, it doesn't hurt to look deeply at one's motivations for service to be sure it continues to be a healthy arrangement. Also, I could foresee such an arrangement eventually breaking down due to the tension of wanting to serve the Muslim community while at the same time not wanting to be part of the Muslim community, which might strike some Muslims as strange. Not everyone wants an "outsider" to help them; this may be particularly poignant today, given the legacy of European colonialism in the Muslim world, and the way some Western organizations take a paternalistic approach to Muslims and try to "save" Muslims from practices they deem backwards or uncivilized. Basically, while some people want to serve, not everyone wants to be served.
Anyway, from an Islamic perspective, what is important is the view of Allah. That is, what is important is your relationship to the divine. What is important is the view of the divine on your religious beliefs and practices, and overall actions in life, not the overall view of Muslims or the view of Islam as a faith.
Similarly, the core teaching of Islam is serving Allah, not serving Muslims. There are many ways to serve Allah; serving Muslims is religiously meritorious when it is done as a way of serving Allah, but it is not the only way to serve Allah.
From a historical perspective, there are some respected figures in Islamic history who were not Muslim but aided Muslims or the Islamic cause. For instance, the Christian king of Abysynnia who protected the early Muslims from persecution. If you go through the account of Karbala, you will see that a number of people who were Christian also stood up for Imam Husayn. Also in the classical era of Islamic history, Muslims and people of other faiths worked harmoniously together on scientific and other projects and also occasionally shared the same site for houses of worship. (That being said, there was more of an equal playing field in those times; there wasn't the post-colonialist or "clash of civilizations" imbalanced power dynamic.)
Overall, despite the stereotypes of Muslims being intolerant, I think most Muslims are comfortable with religious diversity because the Quran gives a place to other religions and doesn't say that all other religions are false or that all other people are doomed. Also, most Muslim cultures have historically had religious minorities. I think some Muslims also secretly like people who are different because it can get a little boring seeing the same type of people again and again. That being said, if you do work within the Muslim community, I am sure some Muslims will encourage you to convert!
Anyway, I certainly don't mean to be discouraging in any of the above; your situation is unique to your own self and surroundings; these are just some thoughts on the overall dynamics that might arise. I wish you the best in whatever paths you take in life!
Thank you for your question. Both sides of the God debate have their own arguments and rebuttals and so if a certain argument has caused confusion you should seek its response from those who have been well trained in the intellectual sciences. It is also important to consider the role of religious experience when forming the presumptions to your intellectual framework and to realize that atheists also recognize the validity of theist arguments based on the presuppositions of theists.
May you always be successful.