As any reader may have noticed, I am not particularly regular in posting on this blog, however I have kept this blog running to benefit those who maybe seeking Allah. This happens to be the first post of 2016- a year that truly changed my life wherein Allah out of His infinite mercy graced me with my dear husband. For a while I had felt to write a post advising sisters on the kind of spouse to look for and now I feel this is the best time to prepare this post. I do this with the intention to help sisters (especially) in their search and to give them hope that one day Allah will indeed accept their duaas. I cannot be too explicit in my own story as we like to keep the full story to ourselves.
For three years or so I had been on a spiritual sabbatical (as one sister put it)… I had graduated from university and decided to spend time focusing on mending my relationship with Allah. By His mercy alone, I shunned the thought of a career and was blessed by Allah to spend time serving His deen. All the while I had marriage on my mind. Allah blessed me with the desire to get married for His sake. Along the way Allah taught me many lessons pertaining to the search for a spouse.
Al hamdu lillah I did not desire much from my prospective spouse. I couldn’t exactly verbalise what I was looking for, but I asked Allah earnestly for all I could think of. As the journey began, I realised it would not be an easy one. By His grace people of knowledge also passed their proposals forward but something was missing… sometimes to me the implementation did not match the level of knowledge or sometimes brothers (and/or their families) were too relaxed on the shar’i rules revolving hijab and niqaab.
As time progressed, my age increased and my mother’s worry intensified, my duaas to Allah became deeper. However, I was not ready to accept someone who had little desire in his heart for Allah. In almost every duaa I begged Allah for a special kind of person to be my partner… I asked Allah for 3 things in conclusion: that he should love Allah, that he should love me for His sake and that he should help me increase in my love for Allah.
I was not sure exactly which person would be better and who would be worse- this Allah taught me by giving me different proposals and by me experiencing rejection or having to turn away myself. The cycle of waiting and anticipation was not easy, but I had to rely upon Allah. It was the Ramadhan of 2015 that I became very serious and intended to tie my camel hard. I begged Allah to give me the means and very soon after Allah opened doors for me… I tried every method within shar’i limits. Although al hamdu lillah I did receive a good prospect from these means, it too withered away. However, it was after this proposal I learnt what I was looking for- I needed a brother with tasawwuf/tazkiyah despite everything else.
Then I came to a phase of complete mental exhaustion. I felt like a real pauper in front of Allah. There were no more means for me to exploit and I surrendered to Allah. With a lump in my throat I vented my frustration to Allah and told Him “there must be someone who is looking for someone like me!” I asked Allah for that person.
Spontaneously, Allah reminded me of a particular brother who I knew of through one of my friend’s brother. My friend had wished three years back to pass my name over to the brother (through her brother) as she thought he would be the best for me. I too was quite interested and always felt a strange pull towards him- however, for some reasons my friend could not pass the proposal over. For the next few years, I had forgotten about this brother and was busy considering other proposals.
Now, I remembered him and all of the sudden I became silent and thought again…yes? I found out that he was still looking himself. That strange feeling of familiarity dawned upon me again. My eyes almost watered at the prospect of thinking that he seemed to be who I was looking for, but I pacified myself saying that Allah has even better for me. Yet Allah inspired me to make duaa. I first asked Allah to grant him a good righteous spouse… a duaa I felt awkward making as somewhere in a deep corner of my heart I felt “what if I am his decreed spouse?”. After a small while, the feeling of familiarity became overwhelming and I thought to myself “why am I limiting the mercy of ALlah?” I asked Allah to join us if it was a good match because it was a case of “you seem to be who I am looking for and I seem to be who you are looking for”.
I had no idea how it would happen but I asked Allah to pass my proposal over to the brother. I trusted Allah. Nonetheless, I could not conceive that it would actually happen so soon… two to three weeks later one of my teachers informed me that a brother was interested in marriage. In my heart I felt it must be only one person. It was him.
I still feel so incapable of thanking Allah enough for blessing me and helping me in this manner. After the elders had finished discussing and we too were content, by Allah’s mercy six weeks later we were married. After nikaah, my husband told me how he got to know of me… but this is our secret and I shall not share. I learnt through this whole search that sometimes you will employ means after means but when the time is right Allah will give you without any means! Al hamdu lillah, my husband may not be very knowledgeable, nor very rich in terms of wealth… but he certainly loves Allah and struggles for His sake. This I shall always commend him for. I did not look at his age, his job or education… I accepted him because Allah is his top priority.
The amazement and wonder at Allah’s mercy will not depart from me. I see my husband sometimes and I cannot help but think this man is now with me… someone I had asked Allah for not knowing what would happen… I reflect on how Allah didn’t let us get married a few years back. Allah gave us both time to spiritually develop and grow. I had some strong spiritual responsibilities and I felt in my heart that Allah wanted me to first focus on completing this venture… It happened to be that just over a month of completing this venture I was married. Al hamdu lillah. Now, Allah has taught me that the pull I kept on feeling was in reality due to the fact that this person I had known from aalam e arwah (the world of the souls, where the souls reside before being born in this world).
In a nutshell, what I learnt was that we should certainly struggle and strive our best to attain what we desire- this is to say that we should tie our camels whilst trusting wholeheartedly in Allah. We should beg Allah with deep tears and wait patiently yet agonisingly for His opening. To marry was something I had been making duaa for over quite a few years. My intention in marrying Allah knows and need not be disclosed but I took it as an act of worship and was avid to undertake it. I had tried and tried, I had used up all of the means Allah gave me and that was it… I surrendered to Allah… I felt there was not anything for me to do anymore. It was right after this point that Allah Ta’alaa showered His mercy upon me and opened the doors. Hence, we should beg Allah for what we desire of the good and trust Him whilst keeping steadfast on those duaas. When the state of ridhaa (contentment) overcomes us and we surrender to Allah, that is when inshaa Allah the doors will open.
Advice for those looking:
Those life experiences of mine may have already taught a great deal, however, I do wish to dedicate a section of this post advising the readers of how to look for a spouse and what to look for in a spouse.
The first and foremost thing is to make a solid intention. The intention should be pure and pious. It should be one of pure resolution and not mere thoughts. Then one must continuously make duaa to Allah for help and guidance in this matter. As the search is progressing, one must be working on their heart and mending their relationship with Allah. If we want a successful marriage that is blessed by Allah then it is not far fetched to say that we must become Allah’s friends or at least try to so that we can enjoy the special blessings from Him that He grants to those who struggle in His way.
A serious search is necessary. One must inform their network of their intention to get married and employ all other means if necessary. Only after all of the means have been utilised can a person sit down and “wait” for the spouse to come inshaa Allah. If we do nothing and are hoping that we will get married then that is just like thinking money will fall from the sky… Make sure that all shar’i laws are upheld during the search. There should be no relationship or contact before marriage. One small meeting with basic questions should suffice. The rest of the details should be enquired from the elders. A tip especially for my sisters, please research as to who the brother accompanies. Make sure that his company is pious people and that his “record” is clean. Sometimes, asking elders to talk to his friends or close ones is a good idea. Keep on doing multiple istikhaarah and profuse duaa throughout. Once the decision has been made, do not wait, marry as soon as possible. There should be no talking to each other during this phase. Believe me, after nikaah Allah will grant a special mercy that will help you bond with your spouse straight away inshaa Allah.
So what should you look for in a spouse? One of the best advices I read before marriage is this: there are three types of practising Muslims- the aabid (worshipper), the aalim (learned one) and the aashiq (the lover), if you had to choose between them choose the aashiq! What does this mean? Even if the brother is not a person of tahajjud or a person of knowledge if he has left the love of dunya, has passion for Allah in his heart and will struggle hard to please Him then this brother is the brother to go for inshaa Allah. One who loves Allah will automatically love you and grant you your rights inshaa ALlah. Of course, a lover is not a lover who disobeys his Beloved. If you find an aalim who is aashiq then that is light upon light… but don’t just say yes because the brother has a fancy title…look carefully into his character and approach to deen. If he seems to be too relaxed and engrossed in dunya, you can step back. A way to discern what is his priority is by observing carefully as to what his demands are and what questions are being asked. If he constantly asks about deen then it is a sign that deen is the most important to him. If he asks questions about dunya time and time again then it is a sign that he is struggling with love for this world.
At the end of the day, who will benefit you in marriage? The brother with the highest degree? The best job or heaviest bank account? No, a brother with deep passion for deen and exquisite character is who will facilitate marriage for you by His permission.So remember to prioritise wisely. Marriage is not a fancy fairytale. A lot of work is needed in order to maintain the sanctity of the marriage and general life. Some youngsters are looking for “fun” and great ventures with the spouse (which is not always a problem) not realising that marriage is about commitment and hard work.
Leave sins. Work hard on becoming Allah’s true slave and marry for the sake of Allah. Keep on trying and making lots of duaa. Soon Allah will give inshaa Allah. Never place expectations in the people, but place all your hopes and expectations in Allah. Allah will always be loyal to your expectations whereas people will always fail to meet your expectations. Be content with Allah’s decree and be grateful when the spouse comes inshaa Allah… the grass CAN be greener on the other side… but it depends on where you have perched your garden…
Please make duaa for me and my husband, that Allah accepts our marriage, that He allows us to serve the deen and that through us He revives the ummah. JazaakumAllah.
A slave of Allah.