I can’t remember the last time I had an actual conversation with someone that required some intellect and world knowledge.

Nowadays, people hardly have conversations because they’re always on the go, trying to reach some financial or career goal, or things like that.

What ever happened to the simple joys of using your mind for sincere, in-depth thought?

Why don’t people just slow down and smell the roses? And don’t say it’s cause the world works that way.

YOU make your own world.

YOU decide what you do with your life, and whether or not you’ll be a slave to society’s views on success.

What do you want out of life? What are you willing to do to get it? What will you compromise? What are your priorities?

I just find that people today are so focused on worldly things that are temporary, that they forget about focusing on the things that have deeper meaning. For example: the guy that says, “I won’t have a conversation with someone unless it’ll help me with my work/school/etc.” WHAT IS THAT?!?! What about just taking a moment to talk to someone, purely for the sake of just sharing thoughts on life? No complaining, no whining, none of that. Just talking about thoughts on life, or how the world is such an amazing and beautiful place, but we so often miss it?

What about the guys and girls that say, “I wanna finish school before I focus on my faith,” or, “I won’t get married until I’m stable with my job and career,” or, “Living here in Canada/United States requires us to modify Islam to fit what the norm is.”

First off…

School = this life.

Faith = Hereafter.

Career = this life.

Marriage = Hereafter. (and a 50% passing grade freebie for your Life test – read on if you don’t know what I mean)

Pleasing people = this life.

Pleasing Allah = Hereafter.

Think about what is most important to you as a Muslim. We don’t know when we’ll die and have to face Allah’s judgment, and so, why can’t we put as much, if not more focus on pleasing Allah and preparing for the Judgment Day, as we put on passing that class or getting that degree? What is the degree going to get you? Yes, Insha Allah, it’ll give you an opportunity at a job/career, a stable income, and a sense of security for you and your family. I’m not saying that education is bad. In fact, I’m an advocate towards lifelong learning, and constantly seeking knowledge in the way that best suits you and your learning style. But, that job, that stable income, that security, is all from Allah, and He can take it away just as easily as He gave it to you. There’s no guarantee. BUT, if you trust in Allah, then you know for certain that He will provide for you what you need, and whatever stresses or difficulties you face will in fact be blessings in disguise, as Allah says:

“And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty). And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine. And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him. Verily, Allah will accomplish his purpose. Indeed Allah has set a measure for all things.” [Surah At-Taubah, Chapter 65, Verses 2-3]

You can relate that verse to so many different factors of our lives. This include school, faith, career, marriage, pleasing others, pleasing Allah, and whatever else you face in life.

You may ask, why would I put career and marriage in the same category? It’s because we find too many people putting such a huge focus on their careers and not bothering with marriage, thinking that marriage will actually deter them from their school work. To be honest, I have never seen a case where a couple has lost their focus or done worse in school because of their marriage. In fact, I’ve actually seen the opposite. The reason, they explained to me, was that by being married, you build a foundation of support, trust and understanding with the person you marry. You don’t need to look for support, because your spouse will stand by you as you reach your goals. You build a trust, because during the growing phases of your life, you stand together and help each other along the way. And you build an understanding of each other, where you know what matters to your spouse, and you both learn to better understand and compromise (which are both HUGE key ingredients to a successful marriage). You grow together into one unit. You learn to build that bond that is unmatched by any other. The bond of marriage so beloved to Allah. It’s one of the greatest things you can do for yourself and your future in this life and the Hereafter.

That makes so much sense to me. When you’re not married, and I can vouch for this, you become so tied up with school, a career, and making money, that you don’t find time to balance and prioritize things. There are more important things in life than just school and career. There’s family, health, and most importantly, faith.

We need to begin reflecting on this, as it bring me to my next point: pleasing Allah vs. pleasing people. Don’t get me wrong, Islam teaches being good to others, and to treat people with the utmost level of care and kindness. But, it is done through the remembrance of God, and the emulation of the life of the Prophet. When someone asks you to do something that deters you from pleasing God, or makes you do something that is Haraam, then it is of no benefit to you. Please Allah, and He will make others who matter be pleased with you. Besides, He is the Owner of hearts, the Provider of all things, and the Most Generous.

Think about it. It was a great reminder for me. Hopefully, it was for you too.