Sometimes you have to lose it all to understood what you had in the first place. When I was married and had no financial problems and had everything done for me I didn’t appreciate anything; it was only after this was taken away that I gained appreciation – not for what I had but for who had given it to me: Allah. The concept is so simple that a lot of people have trouble understanding this, we are put on this Earth to worship our creator and that is the only reason. This of course, takes on different forms like praying and taking care of the Earth and helping others and even showing kindness to animals etc but Allah is our goal and everything on this Earth should be tools to get us there. The problem that people have, that even I had, is that we expect our lives to be good. Why should it be? Where was that ever promised to us? It’s hard to get your head round because that takes faith and not many people have true faith. When we don’t get what we want then we blame Allah and say He is cruel; if I don’t let my kids have snacks because it will ruin their appetite does that make me cruel? If they then tell me I’m not fair and don’t like me, I will still be their mother – that is fact, you cannot change that and I don’t need their approval to be their mother, I will still do my job as their mother. It’s the same concept with God; He doesn’t need us or our approval, if He really is the Almighty then regardless of what we say He will still be the All Powerful, we need him.
Everything that happens in life,happens for a reason; I was very bitter in the beginning about being a single mother and this was my worst nightmare, but alhamdulillah now I see it was for the best. I would have always been dependent on someone else and I would still have been stuck in a violent relationship and wouldn’t have been the best person I could be or the best mother I could be. I wouldn’t have seen how many times Allah saved me by helping me through difficult times when I thought I couldn’t cope but somehow I did; I wouldn’t have seen that although things may hurt for a while it is simply Allah’s Mercy that gets us through. A girl I knew, went through a similar situation to me and yet she wasn’t able to move forward with her life, this made me extremely thankful, I had worried I would always be stuck in a rut; so whilst something bad did happen, I was able to see it could have been much much worse.
Everyone accepts that you have to work hard to get what you want in life and that in for example, martial arts you have to be very disciplined to get to the top, so why is it so hard to apply that theory to God? People make it complicated with their demands and whims but if you think about it, by believing in God you lose nothing. You thank Him for everything and when you don’t have stuff you still thank Him for not making it worse; that teaches you gratitude and leads to a more positive state of mind. A good Muslim will have beautiful manners and will treat everyone with respect and humility, they may not agree with certain things but they understand that Allah alone judges everyone. If I believe in Allah and you don’t it doesn’t affect me; if you are right then none of this made a difference anyway because either there is nothing after this life or we all go to heaven; and if I am right then it’s still a win win situation because then I can insha’allah attain Jannah. Either way, being grateful for what you do have is a valuable life skill that anyone would agree on.
And if you do have this belief that everything in life is pre-ordained it makes accepting your situation so much easier; I was depressed for a long time, I took anti-depressants and saw therapists and nothing helped, even praying helped minimally until I took time out to understand why. When I really thought about things then it all made sense. In Islam we are told that all good comes from Allah and the majority of bad is from ourselves; if I eat junk I can’t blame Allah for me getting fat. If I marry a druggie I can’t complain if he steals from me – we have to be responsible for our choices; but things like death are not so easy to accept especially if there is suffering involved. How many people though shed tears for a gazelle mauled by a lion in a painful way? Not many because they say this is life and this is how animals are programmed naturally; in the same way, death is a part of life it has to happen to all of us and it happens in the way it does for the same reason that some people are rich and others poor. Maybe we are meant to learn to be grateful to God when we see a loved one suffer from say cancer because we are spared the same fate, or maybe it’s because Allah says that for every ounce of suffering or anxiety some of our sins are wiped, or maybe we are just not meant to know the reason why. How many times do we honestly justify every action of ours to our kids? We don’t because we know that we know we are doing what we think is best, Allah, knows what is best. So when bad things happened and I realised they were mean’t to, and it wasn’t my fault nor could I have changed it: like losing my house or having no money, I felt better. Nothing happens without the will and might of Allah, if this was His plan for me then it was my test and not necessarily my punishment. Today, I face being in a much worse position financially and in regards to my housing but I can’t say I’m really stressed now because I know whatever happens is meant to; I make dua and ask Allah to give me strength and Mashallah I don’t feel the anxiety, it’s like I’m shielded from it. Subhanallah! I choose to put my faith in Him who holds my life in His hands, and it really works; I can’t pre-empt what I can’t foresee so I let Allah be my eyes and guide me and I trust Him, I think that is the most important bit: trust, and if I suffered all that I have in my life to get to this point and learn the true meaning of the word trust, then I’m glad I did.