You are standing at the door and can hear shouting. A woman is shouting at her husband and telling him off severely. You are there a while more and cannot hear the husband shouting back. Is he not in there? Is he not a MAN? Why is he letting her vent her anger like this? You may be tempted to go in and try to sort things out especially if that man is your brother, uncle or son. A man should not be treated like this. Are you thinking “What a coward!”
Would you be thinking the same thing if I told you that that man is the Umar ibn Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him). A companion of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), the second caliphate and a brave and courageous man. He was the only Muslim who emigrated from Makkah during the daytime challenging the people of Quraish to stop him: “If any of you want his mother to lose him (to death) then let him follow me”. None dared. Even Satan wouldn’t dare meet him. He would walk on the opposite side of the road as Umar ibn Al-Khattab.
Now going back to this little domestic and realising the identity of the husband, if I was you I would just turn around and let them be. I’m sure Umar knows what he’s doing. And that is exactly what one man did. This man had gone to the house of Umar ibn Al-Khattab to complain about his wife. But when he heard Umar’s wife shouting he decided to go back. At this point Umar was leaving his place and saw the man walking away. Umar called the man and asked him for the purpose of his visit. The man explained why he had gone to Umar’s place and the reason for going back. Umar responded by saying: “Is it not true that she prepares food for me, washes clothes for me and suckles my children? Besides, I enjoy peace of mind because of her and am kept away from indecent acts on account of her. Shouldn’t I therefore tolerate her excesses? “.
This is a great lesson for all of us. When faced with whatever situation in our lives, good or difficult, do we choose and act upon the right option. Or do we keep scores and tabs? Maybe we adopt a ‘What’s in it for me?’ attitude. What’s right is checked against the Quran and the way of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). It’s checked according to our duties and responsibilities according to Islam. It’s checked against our hope for the mercy of Allah and fear from acting in a way that will bring about His displeasure. It’s checked against our knowledge that every individual person is accountable for their own actions and choices of inactions.
1. Gain Knowledge about your Duties and Responsibilities
It’s not just knowing what we’ll be accountable for, it’s also knowing the way and method that will gives us a blessed and content life here and in the hereafter.
2. Act on that Knowledge with Ihsan (excellence)
Implementing what we learn transforms information into knowledge in a way that we’ll be the first to reap its benefits, by the will of Allah.
3. Seek Help
Do not go through life feeling lonely. Seek the aid of Allah first and foremost through your acts of worship and Dua (supplication) and then the advice and company of good righteous people whom you trust and can rely on.
4. Have Good Intention in People
Don’t jump to conclusions. If something is unclear don’t put up your defence mechanism on full blast and assume they are out to get you! Ask for clarification. I hope you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
5. One Step at a Time
All this may be daunting especially if it touches a personal and emotional matter. The most important thing is to make the sincere intention to begin and straight away follow it up with action, however little it may seem to you. It’s like planting a seed that with attention and effort will grow to a great tree that will provide so many benefits to all around it.