“Call upon Me, and I will respond to you” [60:40]
About a year ago, my husband volunteered himself in teaching a class of teenage boys (aged 14-16) about Islamic Study. It was just once a week. So in the syllabus, they were going to be assessed in every end of the term.
My husband set up the exam questions and afterwards brought them back for marking. So I got the chance to vet through all the students' answers. lol!
And there was one question in the assessment which went like this:
HOW DO YOU KNOW WHETHER OR NOT YOUR DU'A IS BEING GRANTED?
And before I looked up at all the variety of answers, I gave myself a thought about it.
I went through 1 paper, looked at the boy's answer. And here's what he wrote;
Our du'a will always be listened and granted by Allah. It is just a matter of time, whether He S.W.T. answers it right away, or holds it for the right timing later on, or substitute it for something better.
When I read that, I felt like a fool. OF COURSE! How can I forget?
And today, after almost a year, I still remember this. All I want to write here is, whatever we want from Allah, we have to ask for it in the most sincere way, and NOT just that, we have to have faith. The key to making du'a is that we must believe that He is listening to our du'a. Indeed, he is As-Samee' (The All-Hearing)
I know sometimes we feel tired and frustrated that our wish has not yet been granted. Trust me I know how it feels. I sometimes have this kind of feeling too.
But one should not have that kind of thinking, as this is one of the way that hinder our du'a.
“One of you may be answered so long as he is not hasty and says, ‘I said du’aa’ but I got no response” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 6340; Muslim, 2735.
Maybe we need to check back the way we make du'a. Do we really have trust in Allah that He will make this du'a possible? for instance, you ask for a promotion by the end of the year, you keep making du'a but inside your heart you have this doubtful thinking "I don't think I can get this or how in the world can this be possible?" We don't have husnu dzon (positive thought) in Allah.
According to a hadith of Abu Hurayrah: “Make du’a to Allaah when you are certain of a response.” Narrated by al-Tirmidhi; classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’, 245
Or we sometimes forget that by having this du'a constantly, we are showing the act of slavery towards The Almighty, and simultaneously acknowledging Him as The Most Powerful, The Most Merciful. It's the constant communication that keeps us from forgetting our role. And of course, another way to do is to always have ourselves checked; to avoid any act of shirk and stay away from sins as much as we can. How can we ask a lot of things from Allah while we are making shirk or committing sins?
And lastly, always remember that Du'a can also be a test for us. It could be a test for our sincerity, patience, eagerness, and (especially) trust in Him.
And it is Allah who we ask from. Not our friends or some uncles next door. Allah knows and decides what's the best for us, even without us knowing. Remember Al-Baqarah, 2:216?