Monday, February 20, 2012

A Lesson In Gratitude: The Threshold

It's Monday morning and as usual I am up early reading motivations before I really get into the day and came across this Proverbs: 

A quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping on a rainy day- Proverbs


I think we have all experienced a leaky faucet and know how annoying it can be! Imagine if that leaky faucet followed you around the house day in and day out lol! That would drive us crazy.

A woman that constantly nags and is quarrelsome is like a constant dripping. Constantly ungrateful and always complaining. Do we find that we can be a constant drip? Are we always talking about what we don't have? what's not right? and are we constantly on our husbands back? 

That Proverbs made me reflect on the story of Prophet Ibrahim alayhi salaam and his advice to his son.

After Ismail’s (alayhis salam) mother had died, Ibrahim came to see his family whom he had left near Zam-zam. Ismail (alayhis salam) was not at home when Ibrahim (alayhis salam) arrived, but his wife was. She did not know who Ibrahim (alayhis salam) was. When Ibrahim (alayhis salam) asked her about how they were managing, she started complaining about how difficult life was and how poor they were. Ibrahim (alayhis salam) told her to give her husband greetings from him and to tell him to change the threshold of the gate to his house.

When Ismail (alayhis salam) returned, he sensed that something unusual had happened and he asked his wife if anyone had been there. Then she told him what had happened and what Ibrahim (alayhis salam) had said to her. Ismail (alayhis salam) told her that the stranger had been his father, and that he had ordered Ismail to divorce her.

Sometime after Ismail (alayhis salam) had taken another wife, his father Ibrahim (alayhis salam) again came visiting and again found no one but the wife at home. However, this time when he asked her how they were doing, she cheerfully answered that they were prospering and she gave thanks to Allah for all their blessings. She offered Ibrahim (alayhis salam) meat and water, and he asked for Allah’s blessing on all their meat and water. When he left, he told her to give his regards to her husband and to tell him to keep the threshold of his gate.
When Ismail (alayhis salam) returned home he asked if anyone had visited. She told him all about the nice old man and the piece of advice he had given in his message to Ismail (alayhis salam). From this message Ismail (alayhis salam) knew that his father approved of the new wife and had advised Ismail (alayhis salam) to keep her with him.
SubhanAllah I asked myself if that were to happen to me, how would I have reacted? Well  then again no need to ask myself because we are tested like this often, when friends ask us about our marriage or family members, it opens the gate for us to start saying more than we should. Sometimes people do not have to ask us, we just volunteer our personal information and complaints to the world and finding all the reasons to complain.
How many times in our marriage would our husband be asked to change his threshold? If you answer often, then we need to reflect on showing more gratitude to what Allah has given us and not focus on complaining so much. 
Also taking a lesson that when men marry women, they marry the woman they pray to have children with, a man does not want the mother of his children to be someone that was not grateful and constantly complaining, they will pass on that character to their children, it just so happens my husband tells me  that Prophet Muhammad salallahu alayhi wa salaam came from the lineage of Prophet Ismail..who was married to the woman that was grateful and pleasant, not the first woman who had opened the door complaining. That says a lot! SubhanAllah much wisdom from that hadith.
It was great motivation for me this morning. Sometimes we have friends and family members that when they get together they begin to complain about their husbands or make you comfortable enough to complain about yours. At the end of that conversation, what was accomplished? A lot of backbiting and slander, really. This excludes the family that give true Islamic and sincere counsel. 
Next time someone opens the door (literally or not) ..how will we answer?

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