This is a continuation of the challenge which i was graciously nominated for by sister Fatmawaty. The preceding three days of the challenge are in my primary blog, just thought it would be selfish of me not to share it with Deen Republic too.
I have been working at a revert centre for close to 18 months now and i have to say it has been the most wonderful experience of my life. I get a chance to be part, albeit in a minor way, of a New Muslim’s journey right from when they take their Shahada.
Normally, in most of these instances, and any revert out there will agree with me, an individual is at a cross roads in his life. Yes, they may have made the decision to become Muslim under no compulsion or duress but there is always that nagging question at the back of their minds, what next?
At that point, one is like a baby who is taking his first steps. They have to learn almost everything, taking wudhu, purification in general, performing Salaah, Islamic manners, Islamic dressing, and reading Arabic text from right to left. The list is endless.
They all remind me of my first day as a New Muslim about eight years ago. We teach them how to make Wudhu and inasmuch as the first time is not always perfect, we know it is a huge step in the right direction. I have prayed alongside majority of the reverts who come to our centre, and am taken back to years ago when i did my first Salaah as a New Muslim….
I was confused, but as the rest bowed and made sujud, i took my time to have a conversation with Allah. This is what i said:
“Dear God, or Allah as i will now be referring to You, here I am, praying as a Muslim. I know i have absolutely no idea what am doing coz i know nothing about Arabic but i pray that i have made the right choice. You know how much spiritual confusion i was in, i humbly pray that you make this a source of spiritual tranquillity in a way that i will find all my answers here. I have heard them saying “Ameen” here and i pray this with the strongest conviction that am on the right path, amen!”
For some reason i felt an overwhelming amount of peace in my heart after this and the kind brothrs at the Masjid did their best to make sure i made it for every Salaah in time. The hardest thing for me though was taking wudhu, i found it overly taxing to wash every time i had t pray. There was a day i prayed all 5 Salaahs with the ablution i had made for Fajr; I’m not making this up, it happened!
It gives me so much pleasure to be part of their journey and every time i see a New Muslim walk into our centre i say Alhamdulillah because these are people that Allah has chosen from amongst millions of others out there. I know we say that we make the decision to be Muslims but I feel like it’s the decision that makes us, it is part of Qadr and we were destined to be Muslims even if we are born into staunch and puritanical settings.
I have to say, though, that at times being part of a New Muslim’s journey can be quie emotional. I have seen numerous people cry, cry due to the joy o finally understanding the purpose of their lives, crying because they got kicked out by their families, because the people they have spent their entire lives loving no longer love them. They cry because they want to be the best for Allah, cry because at times the trials that they go through are unfathomable; the hate, the stereotyping, the knowledge that they are on the right path but their families are pulling them back to ignorance.
At times i sleep at night and i think of them. I admire them because at that very moment of them becoming Muslims, their slates are wiped clean and they are given a chance for a new beginning!
Today i nominate silvermind20.wordpress.com for the challenge. The rules are rather simple, one takes on the challenge if he or she is able to.