There are several moments in our lives when we feel helpless and question why things are happening the way they are. Perhaps we have experienced a job loss or witnessed a very close family member going through a challenging moment. Problems and difficulties come to us in a variety of different forms. Most of the time, we ask ourselves, “Why me?” Why am I the only person experiencing this? Why is Allah punishing me?
We have always been told that Allah SWT is testing us in this life. But those who trust Allah and learn to never doubt Him will be the ones who succeed in life. And the story of Hajar AS is a true testament to the fact that faith in Allah SWT will make it easier to pass this test of life.
Hajar AS was the spouse of the Prophet Ibrahim AS and the mother of Prophet Ismail AS. Hajar AS is one of the most important women in Islam and a role model for all Muslims.
She was originally given to Sarah, the first wife of Prophet Ibrahim AS, as a slave. However, Sarah treated her like a younger sister and helped her understand the truth behind worshipping Allah SWT alone. When Sarah had difficulty conceiving a child, she requested the Prophet Ibrahim to marry Hajar. This way he could have a child as Hajar was much younger than Sarah. Eventually, Hajar gave birth to Prophet Ismail.
The ultimate test of patience and trust was then put upon Hajar. Only a short while after she gave birth to Prophet Ismail, Allah SWT commanded Prophet Ibrahim to take Hajar and baby Ismail to a barren land which is now known as Makkah.
Hajar asked her husband several times why he was leaving them in a place with no apparent signs of civilization but received no reply. She finally asked if Allah had commanded him to do so. When Prophet Ibrahim replied affirmatively, her reply is one that will astound many of us. She clarified that Allah would never abandon them or allow them to perish.
SubhanAllah! It’s incredible the level of confidence, trust, and courage she displayed while being a new mother with a young child. She did not complain or force Prophet Ibrahim to take her back, let alone question why she was put under these circumstances. Instead, Hajar accepted her situation as she believed it was from Allah SWT. The path she took after that was not simple. In a dry land, she traveled with a newborn child while frantically looking for water. Ultimately, Hajar AS succeeded because she maintained her bravery and determination.
She ran seven times between two mountains, Safaa and Marwaa, trying to find a source of water for her child. And when she finally did, it was the miraculous water fountain of ZamZam, which appeared right at the feet of baby Ismail. Allah SWT gifted her with the water fountain that opened up an opportunity for the once barren land of Makkah to become inhabited by people. To this day, that fountain has been providing water for Muslims from all over the world.
Running back and forth between Safaa and Marwaa seven times, like Hajar AS did, is one aspect of Hajj. Despite the fact that Hajar AS shared our humanity, her faith and trust in Allah SWT were unfathomable. Even though we will encounter many challenges in life and things may not always go as we had hoped, it is crucial to keep in mind that living in this world will become simpler if we have faith in Allah and trust Him to always provide the best for us.
We should try to remember Hajar AS not only when we are performing Hajj but also when we are experiencing hardships, trials, and tribulations.
We should remember her strength, her trust in Allah, and her acceptance of Allah’s commands. May Allah SWT guide us all and help us rely on Him.