Had I gone with the flow, I would have drowned. *innocent face* I’ve learned this lesson time and time again. I used to be one of those who had absolute confidence in the (Qadr) Decree of Allah, and don’t get me wrong, I still do. In fact my confidence has only grown in the mercy and the benevolence in Allah through the mistakes that I’ve made. But I’ve learned that the Qadr is a beautiful thing. It seems absolute, but it is in fact more flexible than we think. *adjusts nerdy glasses*
When you go with the flow, with blind trust in Allah… You forget that the Source of all Authorities has given you certain authorities of your own. While you trust Allah, you forget that He trusted you… and in your failure to do what was expected of you, you compromised that trust. For example, if you’re literally swimming in a river, and you decide to go with the flow… inevitably you will suffer, for the river will lead to the edge of a waterfall which will require you to make an effort of your own beyond the trust in Allah. Allah has given you the arms and legs to swim, and your survival is conditional upon swimming and going against the flow, for the flow will only lead you to drown. *wiggles arms* Do you get it? If it is decreed to you, to survive the current… it is conditional upon you having to swim, as opposed to going with the flow. That is an important lesson.
They say, if it is written for you, never in a million will it belong to anyone else. I’ve also heard that if it is yours, it’ll find its way to you. Indeed it will, but many provisions that are decreed to you, are dependent on certain conditions that must be met. For example, if a man dies without a child. Would it be reasonable to say that no child was decreed to him, for if it were decreed, he wouldn’t have died childless? That would be foolish. Perhaps he was destined 10 children, but it was conditional upon getting married and engaging in the act of sexual intercourse. How else would he have had the children? *scratches head in confusion*
If you starve to death, would it be reasonable to say that no rizq was decreed to you, otherwise you wouldn’t have died out of hunger? Indeed that would be foolish, wouldn’t it? Perhaps you were destined lavish meals in 5 star hotels for the rest of your life, with the ability to not only feed yourself, but many others as well… but it was all conditional upon you making the effort of finding a job, and through that job immense sustenance was written for you. Instead you did nothing, but went with the flow. Clearly the flow did not work in your favor, for it required of you to utilize and take advantage of the means that Allah had written for you. *wiggles arms again*
They say Du’a is the weapon of the believer. However, I would like to assert that it is not only a weapon, but it is a super power. You are so much more powerful than you give yourself credit for. Allah has given you the gift of Du’a. They say Du’a changes Qadr, but what that essentially means is that Du’a has the power to unlock the “otherwise withheld provisions” written to you in your Qadr. Allah has written many things to you, and for many of them Du’a is the absolute condition.
In Surah Ghafir, Allah says:
“Call upon me; I will respond to you.” Indeed, those who disdain My worship will enter Hell. [40:60]
This is essentially Allah telling you, that “Whatever it is that you need, know that I am its Ultimate Source, and call upon me, I will respond to you.” This is Allah enforcing your super powers within the Holy Quran itself. What more of a reminder do you need? *shifty eyes*
On the authority of Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him), who said that the Prophet (ﷺ) said:
Allah the Almighty said: I am as My servant thinks I am (1). I am with him when he makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assembly better than it. And if he draws near to Me an arm’s length, I draw near to him a cubit, and if he draws near to Me a cubit, I draw near to him a fathom. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him at speed. (1) Another possible rendering of the Arabic is: “I am as My servant expects Me to be”. The meaning is that forgiveness and acceptance of repentance by the Almighty is subject to His servant truly believing that He is forgiving and merciful. However, not to accompany such belief with right action would be to mock the Almighty. It was related by al-Buhkari (also by Muslim, at-Tirmidhi and Ibn-Majah). [40 Hadith Qudsi, Hadith 15]
Allah is the Source of all Forgiveness and Mercy, and his forgiveness is conditional upon sincere repentance. If you ask, and if you ask with sincerity, Allah has promised that his mercy exceeds his wrath. [40 Hadith Qudsi, Hadith 1] Thus when you make Du’a and ask for forgiveness, have so much Yaqeen (faith) in his acceptance, that nothing could convince you otherwise.
Just like forgiveness, there are provisions such as love, marriage, peace of mind, happiness, etc. which could also be decreed to you upon condition of Du’a. Therefore, all you need to do is ask and it is yours. Make Du’a for it, perhaps what you desire is a few more sujood away, perhaps it is a few tears away, perhaps it is dependent on being prayed for at a certain time of day, perhaps you must envoke Allah by a specific name, perhaps there is a course of action you have yet to take to avert a calamity or to avoid something that is not in your favor … Never fail to take advantage of your super power. If you chose to go with the flow, know that it is beyond foolish of you to say, “Insha’Allah Khair” – and then inevitably drown. Do what Allah has given you the power to do, and remember that only dead fish go with the flow. Use your dua, to create a new flow, and just keep swimming. *continues to wiggle arms*
As much as we are all dependent on the will of Allah, He has asked you to always remember that He is there to respond when you call upon Him. *makes intense eye contact* Don’t give up on what your heart desires, invoke Allah through Du’a and have absolute faith in its fulfillment.
It might take a while, but it is important to be as absolute in faith as you were the first time you asked for it. Sheikh Uthmayeen may Allah have mercy upon him said:
“People must not give into pessimism because it will make their lives miserable. Rather, it is obligatory to follow the example of the Prophet (SAW) and he loved optimism. Therefore it is a must to be optimistic about good and avoid being pessimistic. Some people, when they attempt something time and time again they become pessimistic, believing they will never succeed in that matter, so they abandon it. This is a mistake. If you find something that is beneficial for you; don’t lose interest in it after the first attempt; rather keep trying until Allah opens up a way for you.”
– A Collection of Islamic Rulings by Sheikh Uthaymeen
(Translated by Rasheed ibn Estes Barbee)
And Allah knows best. *adjusts nerdy glasses*