I recently had a conversation with a brilliant relative about anxiety and the dire need to be in control of everything going on around us. That frustrating fight with the unknown and uncertainty. That burning urge to be prepared for anything and everything that comes next. Then she humbly advised me, “Frequently say, ‘Hasbiyallah waneemal wakeel’ i.e. ‘Sufficient for me is Allah, and [He is] the best Disposer of affairs.’ Then she went on and said, ‘But don’t just say it. Mean it. When you say sufficient for me is Allah then that is total submission to Him. It is surrendering to the Almighty; acknowledging His power, acknowledging your own weakness as a human being and acknowledging that whatever Allah has bestowed upon you is truly best for you. He is the best disposer of affairs. Whatever you plan for yourself will always be limited in contrast to what He has in store for you. So be content. Be grateful. Have faith in Him and His plans for you. So live by it. Live by ‘Hasbiyallah waneemal wakeel’.”
In this precise moment, her words struck me. I have heard and said the statement so many times in my life, but did I truly, deeply believe in it’s meaning?!
Despite being a believer in Allah, there have been many times where I questioned His plans for me. Maybe not loudly, maybe not openly, but just that small feeling in the heart like ‘This could have gone better. Should have gone better. What’s the point of this chaos right now?’ It is like saying, ‘I trust that you have my best interests at heart, but I should also have a say in how my life unrolls.’ But that’s just from our ignorance and naivety as human beings; we say we trust that Allah is the best planner, but do we really?!
For a period of over ten years, Allah tested me with the same test thrice, just different versions of it. And I remember many nights in my sajjadah begging Allah to remove me out of those situations. But the test dragged on and on and on. I felt so helpless and I kept saying to Allah, ‘But I have learned the lesson. Please Ya Allah. I have already learned the lesson. Get me out of here. Why am I still here?!!’ Those were such desperate moments for me because sometimes I did believe that so long as Allah was still testing me then there must be a very good reason for it. But sometimes I was just so helpless I kept asking, ‘What’s the point here? Am I being punished or something?’ I didn’t have that yaqeen, that surety, that unshakeable faith that Allah wouldn’t put be through pain just for the sake of it.
Then during one of the last nights of last Ramadhan, I stayed for long crying to Allah to grant me clarity on the matter because I thought I had already learned what I was meant to learn. If there was something more to it, I was not seeing it. I need help to see it. I desperately need clarity. As I finished my crying/dua session I lazily entered into Instagram to distract my mind and wallahy the moment I logged in, there it was- my answer. It was just one video but it led me to another and another and another and lots of reading that made it make all the sense. And subhanallah to date, I still have very random conversations and something is said and is still part of my answer. Like, every single day, Allah is opening my eyes to what I hadn’t realized in over ten years.
Of course it was such a deeply painful experience but the amount of knowledge I learned throughout that period made me take better choices for myself. Made me a better person. A wiser person. In retrospect, I don’t think I would have learned all the lessons that I have if I was listening to someone’s story or reading it from a book. I truly had to go through it all to realize what was expected from me and what I truly needed. Several times I failed to trust in Allah fully and yet He had a plan all along. The journey is obviously not over but I am at the point in my life where I am like, ‘Oh so this is why that happened…’ It wasn’t a punishment. It wasn’t for no reason. He had a good reason for it…
There is a famous quote that I have seen so many times. It goes like, ‘It will keep happening until you learn the lesson.’ Seems pretty straight forward until you are the one in the endless cycle of the ‘seeming’ doom and the depth of it won’t truly make sense until it does.
I have met people with unshakable faith. People who literally live by ‘Hasbiyallah waneemal wakeel’. People who when they don’t get what they want they genuinely say ‘Alhamdulilah’ and when something bad happens to them they say قَدَّرَ اللَّهُ وَمَا شَاءَ فَعَلَ (Allah has decreed and whatever he wills, He does).. They don’t ask ‘what ifs’ or say ‘buts’.They don’t fret. They don’t worry unnecessarily. They know that Allah is in control and wholeheartedly leave their affairs to Him. They know FOR SURE that Allah will come through for them regardless of how big a mountain their problems are. They remind me of the hadith: Suhaib reported that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: “Strange are the ways of a believer for there is good in every affair of his and this is not the case with anyone else except in the case of a believer for if he has an occasion to feel delight, he thanks (God), thus there is a good for him in it, and if he gets into trouble and shows resignation (and endures it patiently), there is a good for him in it.” I love these people. I look up to them. And I pray to be like them someday.
To end this, here’s a hadith to give you comfort about Allah’s mercy upon us.
Abu Razin reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Allah laughs for the despair of His servant, as He will soon relieve him.” I said, “O Messenger of Allah, does the Lord laugh?” The Prophet said, “Yes.” I said, “We will never be deprived of goodness by a Lord who laughs!” (Source: Sunan Ibn Mājah)
Indeed Allah doesn’t test us in order to make us miserable and unhappy. He doesn’t test us just for the sake of it for He is not a sadist. We may not see it, we may never comprehend it but there is always, ALWAYS a reason for every small and big thing that happens in our lives. We thus should always strive to have unshakeable faith in Him, have good doubt in Him and surrender all our affairs to Him as well. This is a big reminder to myself first before anyone else.
Dear reader, here’s your reminder to lay down your burdens to Him so that He can take care of all your affairs. Let go and let God. Never forget that Allah will never forsake you.
As you and I continue taking this endless journey to Allah, I pray that He grants us that kind of submission to Him and that He makes us among His most beloved ones, ameen.
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