Yesterday after Jumah I witnessed a woman take shahadah and it was one of the most touching moments I’ve experienced in a long time. I thought back to my own conversion and how I felt at the time- exhilarated, nervous, certain, excited, and peaceful all at the same time. I’ve never felt so pure in all of my life. I, the stoic one, nearly cried as I watched the woman pronounce the shahadah. In my time of being Muslim I have witnessed many people take shahadah but what touched me about this one in particular is that she is someone’s mother (as in, her daughter who converted brought her to the masjid.) Do you know how much I’ve prayed, cried and wished for SOMEONE, ANYONE in my family to accept Islam? (Let alone my mother). But Allah is the one who makes Muslims. Allah alone offers people the guidance. Just as the Prophet (s.a.w) could not guide his Uncle Talib to Islam, I cannot guide my mother or other family members of mine to Islam. The only thing I can do is set an example and answer any questions they have.
As it stands, my mother has yet to set foot in the masjid. I’ve offered but she has politely turned me down each time. (I have been to her church at least twice now.) My sister grew up attending Jumah with me and going to other masjid functions but when my mom “got saved” she eventually nipped that one in the bud. I know she was worried that we’d influence my sister and she’d want to become Muslim. Yet, my mom doesn’t know that my sister doesn’t want to be Christian. My sister has already admitted to me that she doesn’t believe Jesus is Lord or in Christianity. Yesterday she was talking about her Baptism and how it was a scary experience not a transformative one. At the same time she says that she doesn’t think she is disciplined enough to be Muslim. She thinks the praying, the fasting, wearing hijab etc. will be too difficult. And you know what? I don’t pressure her. She knows she can come to me with any questions she has.
The rest of my family? My father once told me if he had to choose any religion he’d choose Islam. But at the same time he has not expressed any interest in the religion and I know my family well enough not push. (Aside from that he and I have ‘other issues’). As for my cousins, aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces: some of them think I’m strange and have no problem telling me so, some of them accept my choice to be Muslim and leave it at that, some of them are proud but don’t seem to want it for themselves, some are hardcore Christians and would “lay hands on me” if they had the opportunity, and others are too busy wrapped up in their own lives to concern themselves with religion.
I have to admit, when I’ve heard about people whose family members accepted Islam, following their lead, I feel jealous. Not jealous in a bad way but wishing it would happen to me too. I used to think that something was wrong with me. Like maybe my dawah efforts were not good enough. Like I hadn’t said the right things or didn’t behave in ways that inspired them. Now I know different. As I said, I know that Allah makes Muslims we are only the catalysts, the instruments. (And sometimes we’re not even that, Allah just guides people to Islam seemingly on their own).
Will one of my family members ever become Muslim? Allah truly knows best…