Please note: The answers on Hawramani.com constitute friendly advice rather than fatwas. Where relevant, we translate the opinions and fatwas of respected scholars and present them in our answers.

When life’s difficulties cause you to doubt God

Salaam, I feel like everything in my life seems to be going wrong. I am losing my faith in Allah and his plan for me. I am a good and genuine person, all I want is to build for my future etc, I cannot find a job although I have two good degrees, I started my own business and that is not seeing any success either. These past 3-5 years I feel like I have been tested in so many ways and I keep getting told to trust in Allah's plan. I just feel so broken, every glimmer of hope I get it's taken away

Alaikumassalam wa rahmatullah,

I have been in similar situations. The point is to show you your weakness and powerlessness in order to make you truly submit to God. True submission means there should be nothing that God does to you that would make you dislike Him or question His wisdom and mercy. When you reach this stage, you will know that no good or bad can reach you except with God’s permission. You will stop being impatient for change knowing God is already fully in charge.

You wish for change because you feel your present situation is wrong and unfit for you. It is very common for us to feel this way, but it is the wrong attitude to have. The correct attitude is to fully settle your heart to you present situation and be fully ready for it to continue this way for the foreseeable future. When you know in your heart that everything that happens to you is from God, you will stop being impatient for change. You feel like you are in a bus controlled by God and you will leave it to Him to take you where He wants.

It is very difficult to maintain such a state for long, which is why I recommend an hour of Quran-reading every day which helps maintain our awareness of God’s power and closeness. I always remind myself that nothing that happens should reduce my love for God. Accept life as it is and love God whether good or bad befalls you. This is true submission.

It is good to work to change your situation for the better. I am not saying that we should give up and do nothing. But our starting point should always be love and acceptance of God and acceptance of our situation as it is. We can work for change, but we are never guaranteed success. Everything comes from God, so we might as well attach our hearts to Him and leave it to Him to take care of our fate.

You have not achieved true submission until you fully feel in your heart that nothing that befalls you can reduce your love for God. It is a favor from God to put you in such a difficult situation that forces you to fully submit to Him in this way. Those who always have it easy never get this chance to truly submit. So consider it God’s love for you. He wants you to detach from everything so that your heart is attached to nothing but Him. And once you reach that stage, God can open all His doors to you in an instant and completely change your life.

So do not lose hope in God. Always try to be in state where nothing that befalls you can reduce your love for Him. And when you are this close to God, you will stop worrying much about your worldly failures and concerns. You will feel as if you have already achieved the greatest success and you will leave it to God to take care of your future.

Please also see my essay below:

Islam and Depression: A Survival Guide

Best wishes.

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And God knows best.

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