Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Don't Climb Every Mountain

Bism Illah wa as salaamu alaykum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh.

Ever feel like you had loads of big ambitions and don't know where to start? How about when you try to take on so many different things that you are overwhelmed by them all? Of course, there are always people who take on many things and believe they can do them all, and more. This all is relative to a person's ability and, more importantly, Allah's Will. However, what I have learned over the years is that people who try to climb every mountain, or a whole load of very big mountains, end up leaving a trail of broken promises and unfinished plans behind them. There is perfect truth in the sayings, "Something's got to give," and "Everything has a price." In the life of a believer, it must never cost them their deen.

I have made a point to be real with the people around me, my children, and myself. For example, if my children ask me to do a certain activity or make something, I think about the value or benefit it will have. I consider if it will please Allah, if it will draw us closer to Him, enhance our understanding, or improve our practice of Islam. Is it an attraction to, or a detraction from, Allah? If it is a healthy, beneficial activity, I will tell them what the chances are of us doing it and what variables (particular circumstances) need to be in place for it to happen. Sometimes is is as simple as them finishing their school work in good time, sometimes is is dependent on me finishing something or us completing chores. Sometimes it will require us to wait until we've gotten the things we need to do it. Sometimes it is something that simply doesn't draw us closer to Allah or benefit us enough to be worth it and then I say no, citing my reasons.

With friends, I may say it depends on my resources or my ability. Basically, I tell others that I will do what they want IF it isn't a distraction from Allah, IF Allah wills it, and IF I have what is needed for it. In all cases,  in the matter of a few seconds I assess the value of the task and it's price in my life and then make a decision.

When it comes to bigger things, I consider that if I died today, would I have been focusing on the right things? At least, now, I can say that I am actively focusing on the betterment of my deen, mashaa'Allah. My school is for my deen, not any other purpose, mashaa'Allah. My methods of child-raising are for Allah's pleasure in us all, inshaa'Allah. My care of my family and lifestyle are structured to adhere to Islam as well as possible, bi ithn Illah. Even my future plans are all to increase my emaan, tawakkal, and taqwa and that of my children, inshaa'Allah. I'm not doing wonderfully, but al hamdul'Illah, I can live with it and it is a seed to grow from, bi ithn Illah.

When I went to college a few years ago, it was to learn about education and how to raise and teach my children well, inshaa'Allah. However, when it came to me transferring to university to complete my teaching degree, I stopped. Not because it was too hard, but because it wasn't focusing on the right things. It wasn't for the improvement of my deen and it wouldn't help me fulfill my duties to Allah and my family. It would have been an obstacle - a mountain I was not willing to climb.

When you are considering your life, your goals, your future plans think about the various mountains around you. Then assess which mountains you should climb.

- If it takes you away from your primary purpose of living to worship Allah, say goodbye.

- If it distracts you from what's important in the Eyes of Allah and His Messenger (salla Allahu alayhi wa sallam), say goodbye.

- If it keeps you so busy, you cannot find dedicated time every day to learn and grow in Islam and understand and memorize Quran, say goodbye.

- If it fills your mind or life with fitna, say goodbye.

- It it is for worldly gain, at the expense of fulfilling your obligations to your family and the Ummah, say goodbye.

We take on things that complicate our lives and distract us from our purpose in this life: worship of Allah.


Don't climb every mountain; look at the mountains whose peaks get you closest to Allah and set your sights on those. All the other mountains will become, just as we are told in the Qur'an, like fluffy wool, unable to raise you to any beautiful heights.


  1. Assalam u alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh
    Jazakallah for this timely reminder.How these simple tools and rules tend to slip away from us busy mamas' hands and minds so easily:-)You're right to prioritize and put Allah first and foremost.May Allah give us the taufeeq of doing as we think and plan Ameen Thumma Ameen.

  2. Wa alaykum as salaam wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh Umm Bilal.
    Wa iyaaki. Subhaan Allah, it is an ongoing thing making these decisions and prioritizing things. Just when I think I'm getting somewhere in one area, I find there is another area I have to watch out for.

    Bi ithn Illah, if we have the right intention and seek clarity and guidance from Allah, inshaa'Allah we will succeed. Ameen, thumma ameen to your dua'!

  3. Asalamu Alaykom,

    LoL @ the title! If the nuns in Sound of Music sing us to do it all, I guess the Muslimahs are doing the opposite.

    I agree NOT to do it all. Sure we CAN for a very limited time and we women pay a dear price for thinking we are super women. We push ourselves and then we start to push other people around (husbands and kids hate that).

    So what to chose and what to discard in our busy lives? You did it just right! If it helps you serve Allah, then do it. If it takes you away from the path, then stop it. Doesn't mean we never watch TV or take a pleasure walk or talk on the phone. It's just an examination of what and who we are rather than doing it all blindly.

    Good stuff, Mai! JAK!

  4. Wa alaykum as salaam wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh Yosra.

    Welcome! Yes, I giggled at the title because I was thinking of the song all along, LOL! Well, I guess the habit and the hijab will have to agree to disagree on this one, eh?

    You know, I've spent my life believing in quality over quantity...but it's really eye-opening when I actually apply that to life.

    Wa iyaaki, Yosra...and thanks for the visit :D

  5. salaams, very well put. It takes a lot of effort to sort thru life's messes and pick your mountains but it is so worth it.

  6. Wa alaykum as salaam wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh Jaiyana.

    I'm so happy to hear from you; I've missed you! Well, I know you are sorting through your messes...al hamdul'Illah. I think when we finally start seeing what is really important, a load of stress is lifted from us. I hope you are feeling better. Big hugs.

  7. Asalamualaykum wa Rahmatullah wa Barakatuh, once again, Alhamdulilah, what a a wise way to prioritise in life...and if life is planned well...Insha-Allah, life can be in complete Ibaadah of Allah S.W.T....may Allah make the mountains in life...easy to conquer...for us all....lots of love to you and the girls...UmmSabiha

  8. Assalamualaikum,

    Good post, thank you for the reminder. A reminder will benefit people of taqwa surely. I pray that you are always in the best of health and may Allah make things in your life right now to flow smoothly, Inshaallah.


  9. Wa alaykum as salaam wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh AA,

    Barak Allahu feeki and ameen to your dua'!

  10. UmmSabiha,

    Wa alaykum as salaamu wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh my dear.

    Jazaaki Allahu khayr wa Ameen! Ameen! Ameen!