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the Message Continues ... 9/147


Newsletter for November 2013


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Marriage is half of your faith

In the religion of Islam, there is a saying that marriage is half of faith and for the other half, we should be regardful of God. With this in mind, we are encouraged to marry and not make a career of being single or being a serial married person (marrying and divorcing over and over again). 

At a recent conference on “Building Strong Communities and Families,” one presenter conducted a workshop on “Ingredients for a Successful Marriage.” 

She related, as we know, that marriage takes work. Sometimes we are looking for the perfect mate but forget that we, ourselves, are not perfect. So when the marriage starts getting rough, we want to pick up our things and get out of the marriage. 

However, if we are regardful of God Almighty, we remember His attributes as a model to pattern ourselves from. God is compassionate, merciful, forgiving, caring, gentle, and the list goes on and on. 

When we select a mate, we should be looking for someone who will help us make it to Heaven and vice versa. Many marriages deteriorate when there is an inability to communicate. Before (and during) the marriage, you should express your expectations and feelings and not expect that your spouse can read your mind. 

Another presenter stressed the importance of exercise, proper sleep, and eating nutritious food. Why? Because things don't seem as big when we are healthy. You notice that when we are exhausted our problems are exacerbated. One person wants to talk, but the other is too tired. While insisting to have a conversation, an argument ensues and it gets out of hand. 

One presenter reminded us that we don't go to God Almighty with a raggedy prayer. When we pray, we are clean in mind and soul. So why do we go to God with raggedy marriages? We don't want raggedy automobiles. 

When we have an accident, we take our automobiles to the repair shop. Likewise, we should repair our marriages whenever necessary. We get oil changes for our cars. We wash and vacuum them. We even get the motor re-built. But, when was the last time you had a marriage tune-up? This should be done on a regular basis. 

Some of us have problems in our marriages so we leave our spouses without getting counseling. We let the TV be our counselors. Some pattern their marriages after the “unreality” reality shows. 

We may be married to them for 15 years but have not lived in the same house with our spouses for the past 10. Let's not go to God with raggedy marriages. Yes, sometimes divorce is necessary. But if we have to divorce, do not divorce the children. 

Both parents have an obligation to raise their children if they live in the house with them or not. 

Many of us are great problem solvers in our careers, with our children, and in our neighborhoods. But many of us forget those same problem-solving skills when it comes to our marriages. Let us work hard at the marriage to make it successful. 

Recently, I heard someone say that some people work hard at making a living instead of making a life. Some people spend more time at planning a wedding than planning a marriage. 

Remember, marriage is half of faith, and for the other half we should be regardful of God. 

Rosa Shareef is a Muslim, a member of the New Medina community in Marion County, a writer, and a teacher.







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