Ade smiled as he adjusted his cap, no one would see him without thinking he is a northerner. At least he will impress his father in law to be.
He waited in the General living room and admire the interior decoration of the room. In fact as soon as he stepped into the compound, he need no one to tell him how influential Halimah’s father is.
“Salamualykum young man.” Halimah’s father said and extended a handshake.
“Walaykumsalam, ” Ade replied as best as he could. Halimah’s father sat down and not long they were joined by Halimah’s mother who sat down beside her husband while Halimah sat at the dining table watching from afar.
“What is your name young man?” Halimah’ father asked and told him.
“Don’t you have an Islamic Name? That will be easier for me to pronouce.” Halimah”s father told him.
“I don’t have one sir. I am a Christian sir.” Ade explained to Halimah’s parents surprise and the father looked at him sharply.
“And why did you come here? Did you think I will let her get married to you? ” he asked trying very hard not to raise his voice for he was burning with rage.
“I love your daughter sir. I am ready to accept her with her religion. ” Ade explained
“I am not going to give me consent, so please leave my house now.” Halimah ”s father ordered and left for his room.
Ade left disappointed but he was not ready to back down. He know he will eventually be accepted.
“Halimah, her father called on her immediately Ade left.
“What is wrong with you? Of all Muslim men in the world, why that man? What happened to you in school?” he asked her calmly, she is his only child but he can never accept this.
“Ade is a good man, I have met his parents and I have let them know I am not ready to change my religion to theirs. ” Halimah explained.
“I am not going to give my consent and I forbid you to see him again.” He said with an air of finality and left for mosque to perform Zuhr prayer.
After the prayer, Halimah’s mum went into her daughter’s room to talk to her, she is all she has and she had never dreamt her daughter will ever open her heart to a non muslim man. She is highly educated in Islamic teachings and even memorised the whole Quran, they had done that for her to always be guided right. What then happened to her? Why will she leave a Muslim man for a non Muslim. She know she shouldn’t be angry with her, she is a mother and must do what a good mother does: talk to her, know what the problem is and how to tackle it. If they both shouted at her, what if she leave home? What if she go to Ade and was accepted by his parents, she might even get lost forever.
“Subuanallah!” she said and sat down on the bed where her daughter lied on the bed crying.
“Halimah, please sit, I want to talk to you. ” her mother said and slowly Halimah sat up and faced her mother with tears in her eyes.
“Halimah, you know your dad loves you so much. You are his only child and he want nothing but your happiness and whatever he is doing is for your sake. He want you to get married to the best man in the world.” Halimah ”s mother explained.
” what happened? How did you met that man?” she asked and Halimah told her mother how she met him.
“He is really a nice man and probably the first man you will ever fancy right? ” she asked and Halimah nodded.
” but not all love lead to marriage. When he told you his intention, did you do an instikharah?” she asked and Halimah nodded.
“Probably, you don’t even want Allah to be in control because that is what you want. Sometimes we pray to Allah to take charge of our life but we don’t even give him the chance, because if you do it well, This relationship won’t even grow. You know it isn’t allowed for a woman to marry a non Muslim in Islam don’t you?” Halimah’s mother asked and quoted a verse in Quran saying
*Surah Al-Baqara, Verse 221:*
_ ﻭَﻟَﺎ ﺗَﻨﻜِﺤُﻮﺍ ﺍﻟْﻤُﺸْﺮِﻛَﺎﺕِ ﺣَﺘَّﻰٰ ﻳُﺆْﻣِﻦَّ ﻭَﻟَﺄَﻣَﺔٌ ﻣُّﺆْﻣِﻨَﺔٌ ﺧَﻴْﺮٌ ﻣِّﻦ ﻣُّﺸْﺮِﻛَﺔٍ ﻭَﻟَﻮْ ﺃَﻋْﺠَﺒَﺘْﻜُﻢْ ﻭَﻟَﺎ ﺗُﻨﻜِﺤُﻮﺍ ﺍﻟْﻤُﺸْﺮِﻛِﻴﻦَ ﺣَﺘَّﻰٰ ﻳُﺆْﻣِﻨُﻮﺍ ﻭَﻟَﻌَﺒْﺪٌ ﻣُّﺆْﻣِﻦٌ ﺧَﻴْﺮٌ ﻣِّﻦ ﻣُّﺸْﺮِﻙٍ ﻭَﻟَﻮْ ﺃَﻋْﺠَﺒَﻜُﻢْ ﺃُﻭﻟَٰﺌِﻚَ ﻳَﺪْﻋُﻮﻥَ ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﺍﻟﻨَّﺎﺭِ ﻭَﺍﻟﻠَّﻪُ ﻳَﺪْﻋُﻮ ﺇِﻟَﻰ ﺍﻟْﺠَﻨَّﺔِ ﻭَﺍﻟْﻤَﻐْﻔِﺮَﺓِ ﺑِﺈِﺫْﻧِﻪِ ﻭَﻳُﺒَﻴِّﻦُ ﺁﻳَﺎﺗِﻪِ ﻟِﻠﻨَّﺎﺱِ ﻟَﻌَﻠَّﻬُﻢْ ﻳَﺘَﺬَﻛَّﺮُﻭﻥَ_
*And do not marry the idolatresses (Christians, jews (unbelievers) ) until they believe, and certainly a believing maid is better than an idolatress woman, even though she should please you; and do not give (believing women) in marriage to idolaters until they believe, and certainly a believing servant is better than an idolater, even though he should please you; these invite to the fire, and Allah invites to the garden and to forgiveness by His will, and makes clear His communications to men, that they may be mindful.*
Halimah looked away.
Halimah’s mother continue saying “Imagine if you marry this man, how will you worship separately? What do you want to teach your kids? Most kids with parents of different end up confused, they don’t even know what religion to worship. How will you use your hijab? How about your iman? How will you increase it? What about the joy and reward women earn during fasting? ” Halimah’s mother asked as tears rushed down Halimah’s eyes.
“Halimah my child, love before marriage is very different from love after marriage. I want the best for you but that man isn’t the best. If you don’t like Alhaji Ahmed’s son, that is okay,we won’t force you against your will, that too is against the Prophet (S.A.W) . So go back to school, finish up your project and come back home. ” Halimah’s mother said and left the room.
Halimah laid on the bed reminiscing her mother’s words. She was lost on what to do as her phone rang, the phone call was from Ade.
Barbara placed a tray of snacks infront of Abubakar before she sat down smiling sweetly at him.
“Actually Barbara, I am not to stay very long, I am here to talk to you. ” Abubakar said and she smiled, she know exactly what he want to do. At last he is going to propose to her and in a few months time, they will get married and she will be the Queen to his empire, and probably divorce him in a few years and so she can finally get what she had always wanted, a share of his wealth!!!!
“I am here to tell you it is over between us.” Abubakar dropped the bombshell and she wondered what had hit her.
“A.B, tell me is this a joke or something? ” she asked and he shook his head. He had given it a thought and he knows that is the best thing to do.
“I should have known you will listen to your man, he is your Dad afterall. So you are going to marry that illiterate local girl he got for you.” Barbara asked.
“This isn’t about my Dad, it is about you, your deceit, lies and greed. I heard all what you think about me yesterday.” he said and she looked at him sharply.
“What are you talking about?” she asked and watched him stand up ready to leave.
“I don’t have time for this. It is over and that is all I got to say. You yourself know the reason why, so I don’t have to say a lot. I don’t want to see you again. ” he said and left.
Barbara sat down feeling angry at herself. Her friends had come over to her place the day before and she had told them her plans of getting married to him for his money. She know there is definitely nothing she can do to go back to him, he Is a man of his words.
Halimah dropped her bag on the bed and went into the bathroom to ease herself. She felt so happy, having submitted her final year project, she knows her days as undergraduate are numbered.
“So when do you think we should go back home? ” she heard Aisha’s voice from the kitchen.
” the answer is when do you want to go home?” Halimah said as she showed up in the kitchen.
“You are the married lady here?” Halimah teased while Aisha smiled, she love the new title a lot.
“Halimah, are you happy? ” Aisha asked her friend who looked at her in surprise.
“Of course who won’t? We are going to be graduate very very soon.” Halimah said.
“Come on, you know that is not what I am talking about. I am talking about the break up with Ade.” Aisha asked, while Halimah looked away, that was the first thing she did immediately she got back to school and she had tried her best to keep away from him as much as she can.
“Aisha, it doesn’t matter if I am happy or not, what matters is that I have done the right thing.” Halimah told her friend, they had refused to talk about the issue for so long.
“The truth of the matter that I have come to realise is that we are not meant to be together if we had, he would been a muslim.” Halimah asked and Aisha nodded.
Halimah sighed and leave the kitchen to the living room.
Immediately after her mother talked to her about reasons she can’t get married to Ade, she decided with great difficulty to perform isthikharah and properly this time according to the sunnah of the Prophet (S.A.W). She performed two Rakah Nawafil salat, and said the prayer:
Allaahumma innee astakheeruka bi ilmika wa-astaqdiruka biqudratika wa-as’aluka min fadhlika al-adheem. Fa innaka taqdiru walaa aqdiru. Wa ta’lamu walaa a’alamu wa anta allaamul ghuyoob. Allaahumma in kunta ta’lamu anna haadhal-amr( mention your problem ) khayrun liy fiy deeniy wa-ma’aashiy wa-aaqibat amriy, fa’qdruhliy wa-yassirh liy thumma baarik liy feehi. Wa in-kunta ta’lamu anna haadhal amr sharrun liy fiy deeniy wa-ma’aashiy was-‘aaqibat amriy. Fa asrifh annee wa-srif ‘anhu. Wa aqdurh liyal khayr hayth kaana thumma a-rdhiniy bihee.
Translation: O Allah!! Behold I ask You the good through Your Knowledge, and ability through Your Power, and beg (Your favour) out of Your infinite Bounty. For surely You have Power; I have none. You know all; I know not. You are the Great Knower of all things. O Allah! If in Your Knowledge this matter be good for my faith (Deen), for my livelihood, and for the consequences of my affairs, then ordain it for me, and make it easy for me, and bless me therein. But if in Your Knowledge, this matter be bad for my faith (Deen) for my livelihood, and for the consequences of my affairs, then turn it away from me, and turn me away therefrom, and ordain for me the good wherever it be, and cause me to be pleased therewith.
While reciting this du’a when she reached Haadhal Amr (this matter) at both places she thought of her problem and then leave everything to Allah.
This gave her strenght to call it quit with him and turned deaf ears to his pleading, even she can’t explain how she did it and within a short while she become her normal self.
“So what about the marriage proposal your dad told you about?” Aisha asked as she entered the living room with a tray of food.
“I haven’t given it a thought yet. I am sure Allah will do the best. ” Halimah replied.
“Amin, ” Aisha replied and they started eating.