Du’a: The Matter Might Bring Evil

Know, dear believer, that one of the reasons your du’a may not be answered, is because Allah knows that the request might actually cause you harm or bring about evil consequences. For instance, you may desire to have money, and in your heart you feel that you would spend it for the sake of Allah, but Allah knows that if you were given money, you would spend it in haram ways, and that it would therefore ruin your imaan. Like the person who is mentioned in the Qur’an:

“And of them are some who made a promise with Allah (saying): If He bestowed on us out of His Blessings, then we will of a surety give charity, and we will surely become amongst the righteous! Then, when He gave them of His Blessings, they became miserly (in spending for the sake of Allah), and turned away, averse (out of arrogance). So because of this He punished them by putting hypocrisy in their hearts, until the Day when they shall meet Him, because they broke which they promised Allah, and because they used to lie (to Allah)!” (Surah al-Tawbah:75-77)

We should therefore beware of getting angry, or complaining, against Allah’s Decree, for it is possible that the matter that we desire might be the very cause of our destruction. Shaykh al-Islam Ibn al-Qayyim, the master of spiritual diseases and their cures, wrote:

“The Divine Decree related to the believer is always a bounty, even if it is in the form of withholding (something that is desired), and it is a blessing, even if it appears to be a trial, and an affliction that has befallen him is in reality a cure, even though it appears to be a disease! Unfortunately, due to the ignorance of the worshipper and his transgressions, he does not consider anything to be a gift or a blessing or a cure unless he can enjoy it immediately, and it is in accordance with his nature. If only he were given a little bit of understanding, then he would have counted being withheld from as a blessing, and the sickness as a mercy, and he would relish the trouble that befalls him more than he relishes his ease, and he would enjoy poverty more than he enjoys richness, and he would be more thankful when he is blessed with little more than when he is blessed with a lot.”

We should note that a believer does not ask for troubles and trials, but when they occur, the true believer relishes them more than they would an apparent blessing, because they realise and expect the great reward that they will obtain through patience and perseverance.

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