I wish I had a clever title for this entry, but really I can only tell it like it is. Allah has a plan and it is more complex than I can ever comprehend.
Today a good friend of mine called me to tell me her husband was delivering the Khutbah at one of the local Mosques in town. I have been awaiting the opportunity to hear him speak for some time now. Needless to say I was very much looking forward to attending. As I hung-up with her and was working out in my mind when I would have to leave work to enable me to arrive at the masjiid in due time, something (ok.... Allah) was pulling at my heart telling me to go to the other mosque. The feeling was so strong that I went with it and passed-up the chance to hear this brother speak and went to the other masjiid. As I was listening to the Khutbah being delivered I remember thinking "really good information" but it was still unclear as to why I was supposed to go that Mosque.
I finished my final rakat and was about to turn to leave when one of the other sisters stopped me to introduce me to a new sister in the mosque that I hadn't met before. Like myself, this woman comes from a Christian home and although she has been seeking (and accepted Islam in her heart and among friends) she has decided that she wanted to say Shahaada at the Mosque.
We ended up sitting together for quite some time, chatting about our experiences and discussing what Islam has meant and is to both of us. Although we come from different life experiences there were similarities between us other than our religion, and Insha'Allah we will spend many more hours discussing them. One of the comments this sister made was how she had been reading and doing a lot of searching on her own as she still trying to connect with the community.--- I do believe that today Allah introduced us so we could be a support and connection to each other. I believe that the reason I was supposed to attend that Mosque today was to meet this sister. That somehow Allah is going to use us in each other's lives.
I know that this thought seems to be a somewhat anti-climatic entry, but I think that it is worth mentioning. Not only do we as humans often fail to see what it is Allah has laid out for us, but we often fail to even look. Other times we question a decision that we made in lieu of another and live wondering if it was the right one.
I was recently reading Brother Green's blog and he was talking about this in his life. How he has had an experience that has made him consider the choice he made and has sparked curiosity of things may have been different if...
I am in no way saying that I have any wisdom to lecture or advise, especially when I often find myself asking the same question about various times in my life, but the more I sit back and look at things, the more I see "Allah has a plan."
If my grandfather had never been killed this last year, I likely would have never began my search into Islam (but Allah knows best). Naturally I wish my grandfather was still alive, but look at what has come out of his passing.
If I had gone to the other Khutbah today I may have heard something that applied more directly to my situation currently but instead I met someone that Insha'Allah will impact my life (and Insha'Allah I will also impact hers).
Brother Green-- Sure taking the other position may have given you an opportunity to witness to those brothers but it may have not. Trust that Allah used you where you were most needed. Think of all of the lives that you impact on a daily basis from your work at London Central Mosque, think of all of the lives that you impact overseas (I am speaking from the heart here... you had a big hand in my reversion to Islam. Would we have ever met if you had taken the other job? Would then I have found the answers I needed?)
I was a the grocery store the other day and a man literally walked into me and then asked me about my hijab and what religion I was a part of etc. He then told me he didn't have a religion and could he join mine? How much did it cost? Where was the office? (Granted he was intoxicated) But I left the store thinking should I have said something more? Given him more useful information, written something down for him? But at the end of the day, I trust that Allah will work it out. That Allah has a plan and He knows best.
May Allah open our eyes to His plan, may we always trust in Him. May He always seek us out... Ameen.