Saturday, August 16, 2014

Family: I Don't Come From A Religious Background

Assalamualaikum brother Aiman.

I hope you can spend a lil bit of your time to read this. I don't know where and who I want to express this.

Well this is about my family. I'm not from a religious background. Two years ago Allah chose me to enter a university with a good environment. I can feel a lot of changes in myself. I started to complete my Solah and so on. I can see things which is wrong and which is good.

But the problem is, I don't have enough courage to do Ibadah when I'm at home. My father doesn't perform Solah and so do some of my siblings. I feel so depressed and I don't know how to deal with this.

I read about Islam and mostly asked me to do good to parents but I don't know, dude. Sometimes I wonder why Allah put me in this situation. I'm so jealous to see my friends' family mostly came from religious background. Their parents gave them knowledge about Islam and advice them in many ways. Their parents are so close with them. But my parents? I'm the one who have to struggle, to comfort myself and make myself strong to face all of this. I used to make decisions by myself. I have no idea if my parents remember what course I take in university.

I don't have best friends, not even one. My friends come and go just like that. I don't have anyone to talk to about everything I went through.

Since I was small until now, I solve problems by myself. I never talk to my parents about my school problems or other things. I always pray to Allah that He could give Hidayah to my family, but still, I'm so afraid that He doesn't want us to go to Jannah. I'm so afraid of the hellfire.

I come from a big family, so maybe that's why my parents neglect me. At home, I don't talk much. I don't have enough courage to talk to my parents about this. I really want my family to be in the right path. I really, really want that. That is my one and only thing that I want. It's okay if we are not rich. It's okay. As long as my family perform Solah, my sisters cover their aurah and do good deeds so that Allah will bless us.

What can I do, brother? I only have Allah. I don't want my family and I to be in the hellfire. I'm scared if Allah doesn't want to accept my du'a because I did many sins in my past. I'm so scared to talk to my family about this.

Wallahi, I'm scared.


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Waalaikumussalam warahmatullah.

Thank you for your email.

With regards to family, it is always a tricky subject. Ironically, it is easier to give advice to a stranger than to your own family. But, hope is not lost. If they are not willing to listen to what you say, then they will be willing to "listen" to what you do - your actions can speak louder. In fact, they have to "listen" to your actions. It is hard for them not to.

So the best Dakwah you can do to your family is to show them with love and compassion the good values that you want them to emulate, despite how they treat you. We are not only kind to the people who are kind to us. We should be kind to all. Good Akhlaq is your most eloquent speech. It can penetrate even the hardest of hearts.

The Prophet didn't discriminate in kindness. He was kind to all, even to those who wanted nothing to do with him. I think you can relate to the Prophet in this. His close family member wasn't only a non-Muslim, but he was anti-Islam. But the Prophet never find a reason to complain about why Allah gave him such a family member. But he always try to find a reason to bring his family member back to Islam. It is a way of keeping yourself positive in hard times.

You can't help people if you are being negative. Negativity doesn't bring out the much needed solution. It does the opposite.

So show them kindness. Show them compassion. Show them your concern for them. When was the last time you asked your mother about her day? When was the last time you helped your father? When was the last time you laughed with your siblings?

These are the small essentials that can help you deliver your ultimate message. You have to build a strong connection before you deliver a message. You can't send an email without internet connection, right? Similarly, you can't send your message across to your family without first building a strong family connection, and it must start with you and it should start with you.

You can start with small things. Ask about simple things. Make them feel your presence and make yourself feel their presence.

Bottom line, you can't help your family without establishing the very foundation of family - love and trust. This process takes time, so consequently, it requires patience from your part and a lot of du'a. The Prophet spent his lifetime trying to send the message across. So we can't expect to only spend a few hours, thinking that the message will be delivered properly and the job is done.

This job is not easy, but it is only given to those who are strong enough to carry it. Allah does not burden someone with more than he or she can bear. So the fact that Allah gave this job to you means that He knows that you have what it takes.

You can ask for help if you need to. Know that you are not alone, and you are never alone. There are people out there who can be your friends, your true friends. Find good friends and be a good friend. There are people out there who have similar problems to you. They can be your support group. There are people out there who can stay with you through thick and thin. They can uplift you. They are out there. But like gold, they are not found lying around on the surface. You have to out and find them. Ask Allah to help you, and He will help you. He is not unaware of your state.

But when all is said and done, you do have what it takes. You just need to realize that and believe it to be true.

You have the right intention and you have the right vision. You asked for forgiveness and indeed, His forgiveness is vast. His forgiveness is bigger than our sins, and we must believe that. To think that Allah can't forgive us is to think that Allah does not have the ability to forgive us. We should not think that way. If Allah can forgive a man who killed 100 lives (as stated in a Hadeeth), then surely, He can forgive all of us.

Surely, He can forgive you.

Say, "O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah . Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful."

(Surah az-Zumar: 53)


Allah knows best.

May Allah give you strength. Ameen.