The Power of Prayer

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I am a firm believer in the power of prayer.  I am also a firm believer in this quote, “Whenever you do not understand what’s happening in your life, just close your eyes, take a deep breath and say, ‘Ya Allah, I know this is your plan, just help me through it.’” I’m always praying for something. Usually wanting something or not wanting something to happen. Scholars say that when we are making dua, we are directly speaking with Allah swt, meaning prayer is a direct link between our Creator and us, his creation. He and us. He and me. Just the two of us. There is no reason for anyone to go in between us and pray for us, while we sit back and relax. I remember listing to a lecture by Mufti Menk. He was talking about how his little daughter would beg and beg for something she wanted. He had said that that was how we were supposed to pray. Allah is the one and only one who can either give us what we want, or not give us what we don’t want. Mufti Mehnk said to pray like you were a toddler; when they really want something, they cry, they are asking (or screaming in a toddler’s case) with all their heart.  All because they really, really, want it.  We should try to pray with our heart and mind together.  With kids always calling for us, and chores to be done, sometimes our prayers and duas are just said automatically, with no feeling.  We need to take a few minutes for ourselves. This will take time.  

From my past experiences, I have learned a few things.  There was once something that I didn’t want to happen.  Everyone else was happy with it, but i had a tornado running inside me.  I prayed and prayed for Allah swt to put it in everyones hearts that this wasn’t a good decision.  I think weeks went by like this.  Then one day, I felt I was being greedy and started praying that if this was good for me, to put it in my heart, and if this was bad for me, to put it in my parents heart.  This went on for a few more weeks. Then one day, I just prayed for everything to go smoothly.  I can honestly say, that that particular day, my heart felt at ease.  I came to realize this was what was meant to be for me.  I’ll share with you something.  At that moment, when i cam to that realization, my brain was still screaming, “NO!, NO!” but my heart was saying, “be happy, this is good for you.”  An ayah from the Quran comes to mind here.  I can’t recall which one, but I remember a bit about the translation.  It went something like this: Listen to your heart. It speaks subtly, softly. Your heart tells you what I want for you. It always will lead you to the right path.  My path. Your heart is not influenced by anything, but me.  Listen to it.  Your brain is always influenced by society, culture, peer pressure.  It will scream at you and confuse you. Your heart will not.

The thing is, one doesn’t usually pay much attention to the heart tugging at you to make a certain decision.  We usually ignore it, for a while at times.  It’s not easy, but we just have to be patient and one day, we will hear what Allah swt wants.  We will feel it.  It’s like weight being lifted from your shoulders.  Sometimes it will be what you were praying for all along. And sometimes, it will be what you were praying to not happen. That’s my case 90% of the time.  So far, whatever I was praying for was not meant to be for me.  I guess I don’t know what is good for me yet.  But it’s okay. I am learning over time. Allah swt knows what is good for me, so I’m in good hands.  

Pray with your herat. Pray for it whenever it pops in your head.  Just pray, say a few words to Him, it will bring some relief to your heart.  Things will fall into place, and your heart will be at ease, and your brain will eventually stop screaming at your for thinking the worst.  

What is best will always happen. We just need to be open to it and we will understand it and be okay with it.  Inshallah.

By Maasi Saba

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Spending time with kids

Family Having Picnic In Countryside
Family Having Picnic In Countryside

I spend a lot of time with my daughters, which is an added perk of working from home. That said, most of these days what I don’t realize is that time is just passing by, I am there with them, but I am really not there. I am either watching TV (I’m a sucker for good TV shows.. sigh), or reading a book or (the worst) on my phone. Since they both are now more or less independent (one is 12 and the other one is 8) and don’t really need my company as such, I have also stepped aside and have started doing my thing. In a nutshell, I am usually only acting as their supervisor (telling them when to eat, do their homework, brush their teeth, etc.) and not really “in” the moment with them. Though when I really start thinking about it, what’s absolutely baffling is how fast time is passing me by!!

How these girls who don’t need their mommy to do most of their stuff now, were completely dependent on me at one point in their life! Don’t get me wrong, I do feel happy for this, and wish them all the happiness and success in the world… but at times, I also miss all those little moments when they were small. Cute times which are now a part of the past and well, no matter how much I want everything to freeze, time will go on and it should too! 🙂

time-for-fun

It’s just that we being the forgetful human beings that we are usually don’t realize the speed of time when it’s silently going by us. And often suddenly get aware of the fact that we have wasted most of it caught up in a mind numbing daily routine. We get a glimpse of it each year at the New Year’s Eve when we realize how fast the year flies by us—and so we make new resolutions all over again which are then generally packed off for the next year, after a month or so. We don’t realize this most of the times, but we spend our lives exactly in the way that we spend most of our individual days. If there is something we cannot do today, chances are we won’t find the will to do it the next day as well. And sooner than we know, we are fifty and we don’t know where all our life went.

So keeping this in view, one of my New Year resolutions for this year was to spend some quality time with my girls on a daily basis— be it going on shopping with them or going to out to eat together. Things that we have just stopped doing together for reasons I don’t remember now. Perhaps we got a little too busy with life. I haven’t been doing as much as I would like to and a month has already passed, but hey, we still have the whole year ahead of us, don’t we! Keeping my fingers crossed.

I’ll definitely give you all a lowdown on how to spend some quality time with your kids once I figure out some sort of formula myself, but for the most part I’m sure it needs to come from the heart and it needs to be worked on. Keep watching this space for more!

by Maasi Wajo

The Good Life

  

Life can sometimes be a very tough thing to handle. So it’s better to try and just take one day at a time. Try to be strong about the things that life throws at us. And smile. Sometimes a smile is all we need to get through the day 🙂