There is so little that we know as human beings about our own selves. We think we know everything, when in reality, we do not. Few of us can say we knew exactly where we would end up in adulthood when we were kids, who our best friends would be, what kind of jobs we would have, what kind of home we would live in, or who we would marry.
We all have hopes and dreams—but ultimately those are just, well, hopes and dreams. They may even be in realistic reach, but there is no way we really know what type of future lies ahead of us.
Throughout my life, this whole unknown future concept scared me immensely—even to the point of tears. It was not about having control over a situation per se, but more so a severe lack of confidence, worry, and anxiety due to not being able to prepare myself (or knowing how to) for whatever was to come.
The dilemma was not knowing when or how or who, whether that was figuring out what to major in at college, what post-grad life would be like, getting married, moving away from home, going on Hajj (the Islamic pilgrimage to Makkah), starting a family… The list continues.
Islam recognizes this very big knowledge gap that humans have in regards to their own lives. It acknowledges we do not know all, nor are we supposed to. What Muslims are encouraged to do in these kinds of situations is “tie their camel” and then put their trust in Allah.
In other words, do your due diligence and leave the rest to God. There is only so much we can control about our lives, and to be able to deal with the rest we need to rely upon and trust God.
Verses of Tawakkul
Over the years, I bookmarked many verses from the Quran about trusting God that brought me great comfort. Whenever I trek toward uncharted territory in my life, I refer back to these verses to give myself comfort.
…place your trust in Allah. Surely, Allah loves those who place their trust in Him. (Quran 3:159)
If placing trust in Allah will result in His love, what other comfort can we ask for in our time of uncertainty and need?
If Allah helps you, there is none to overcome you. And if He abandons you, then, who is there to help you after that? In Allah the believers should place their trust. (Quran 3:160)
When I read this verse, I am reminded that God is my true, best friend. He is the one to turn to for help, and we must realize He can right all of our affairs.
…Enough for me is Allah. There is no god but He. In Him I have placed my trust, and He is the Lord of the Great Throne. (Quran 9:129)
This verse first caught my attention thanks to my teacher. She told me every morning and evening she read this verse seven times and no matter how much she had on her plate, God took care of it all. Somehow, someway, she was able to complete all her tasks in the day even when it seemed their simply was not enough time.
Personally, I have used this verse to calm myself down prior to doctor’s appointments or blood tests—things that really make me squirm and feel uncomfortable. It really feels miraculous the way God soothes souls through verses like these.
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. (Quran 65:3)
The first sentence in this verse brings me the ultimate comfort. It highlights how we humans do not know—we cannot even fathom how beautifully God takes care of us and our affairs.
No matter what we are going through, Islam teaches us to simply trust Him, and He will be enough for us. Again, He knows, while we know not. And once we submit to this reality, the bumpy road ahead in the future will look a lot more smooth.