I would often find myself worrying about things and draining my energy. Yes, it would lead me to prayers, but also depression. When prayer leads you to depression, it means that you are doing something wrong. Prayer is hope. Prayer is faith. Prayer is uplifting. Prayer is not constant worry.
I learned this after moving to this new city. The first couple of weeks were great, but right after that, my husband would come home upset. We had relocated, thinking that he had found the perfect job. However, in a couple of weeks, we were devastated. He began hating his job. He complained about his boss. He did not like the work. But here we were, and still are, bound by a long-term contract with the company.
He would text me from work to tell me how much he despised his job. He would come home stressed. Our happiness, our dreams, our tranquility in life had disappeared. Being the only person he could open up to, I felt helpless. I would cry for hours on my prayer mat. I did not know how I could help him. The kids were sensing our worries. It was difficult.
I prayed constantly for ease. I prayed and prayed. That is all I did. I would ignore my kids, I would ignore my house, I would ignore my chores, and prayed. This led me to constantly be thinking about the problem:
Prayer was leading me to worry.
One night, it occurred to me, prayer should not lead me to worry. Prayer means putting your trust in God, subhanahu wa ta’ala (exalted is He). Prayer means asking for goodness. Maybe there is goodness in this difficulty that we cannot see. I have to stop worrying about that over which I have no control. I should work on that over which I have control.
So, I changed my approach to prayers. I offered my five prayers, and even some optional ones, but instead of worrying constantly, I began thanking God (swt) for His blessings. I would pray for ease, but with the knowledge that there must be ease in this struggle. God (swt) is great. His wisdom, His sight, His reasons are beyond the human capability to grasp.
With my thankful attitude, I began to cheer the house up. I focused my energy on my kids. I started to learn how to make applications for Android. I started to cook regularly. I would feed my kids before my husband would come home tired, so he could have a quiet dinner to recollect his thoughts. I began to pour my heart out to God (swt) early in the morning, before the sunrise. I found my peace. Thanks to the Almighty (swt).
Peace comes from inside, not outside. Peace comes from working within your circle of influence. My husband is still unhappy at work. He still comes home upset. But I have found the way to charge my energy and be his support. I am embracing the experience, for God (swt) must have a reason that is beyond my wisdom.
اللهُمَّ لا سَهْلَ إلا مَا جَعَلتَهُ سَهْلا وَ أنتَ تَجْعَلُ الحزْنَ إذا شِئْتَ سَهْلا
Allahumma la sahla illa ma ja`altahu sahla wa anta taj`al ul-hazna idha shi’ta sahla.
“O Allah! There is nothing easy except that which You make easy; and You make the difficult, if You wish, easy.”1
May God (swt) continue to strengthen our souls and ease our difficulties. Ameen!
- Ibn Hibban in his Sahih (no. 2427) and Ibn As-Sunni (no. 351). Al-Hafidh (Ibn Hajar) said that this hadith is authentic. It was also declared authentic by Abdul-Qadir Al-Arna’ut in his checking of An-Nawawi’s Kitabul-Athkar p. 106. [↩]