© Abu Zaynah
“Assalamu ‘Alaikum wa Rahmatullah”, “Assalamu ‘Alaikum wa Rahmatullah” Whispered Afsana whilst turning her head first to the right and then to the left. She had just completed the two Rak’ah Salatul Istikhara (the prayer for Guidance). She sat on the prayer rug, completed her Tasbih and then made the following Du’a (Supplication):
‘”O Allah, I ask You to show me what is best, through Your knowledge, and I ask You to empower me, through Your power, and I beg You to grant me Your tremendous favor, for You have power, while I am without power, and You have knowledge, while I am without knowledge, and You are the One who knows all things invisible. O Allah, if You know that this undertaking is in the best interests of my religion, my life in this world, and my life in the Hereafter, and can yield successful results in both the short term and the long term, then make it possible for me and make it easy for me, and then bless me in it. If not, then turn it away from me, and make it easy for me to do well, wherever I may happen to be, and make me content with Your verdict, O Most Merciful of the merciful.'”
Having finished the prayer, Afsana got up from the prayer rug, folded it away and then sat on her bed with the paper in her hand. It was a late afternoon in October but the sun was still shining bright through the window as it was on it’s way down to set for the evening. It was her habit that for any major decision in her life, that she would pray the special Istikhara prayer and then proceed to contemplate about what to do, hoping for guidance from above the heavens.
Afsana studied the paper and the photograph that was enclosed with it. The paper didn’t say much. His name was Amjad Mahbub, 29 years old and a BMW car salesman by profession. The BMW was highlighted in bold as if to emphasise some kind of importance to it. ‘Are BMW car salesman different to other car salesman’ thought Afsana with a slight smile on her face. He had 1 brother and 1 sister. ‘Oh, small family’ again another smile featured on Afsana’s face. He had studied up to college level and left with a GNVQ Advanced Certificate in Business and Finance. There were some other sundry information on the paper like parents names, family background etc but nothing further on the prospective groom. It didn’t leave Afsana with much to consider.
She then diverted her attention to the picture. In it was a handsome young man, around 5 foot 8 inches tall, wearing a light grey suit. He had a plain white shirt on with a skinny black tie. It looked like the photo was taken at a wedding as there were a lot of decorated tables and chairs in the background. He was a fairly skinny fellow but not enough to bring out his bones. His eyes were a light brown colour and it almost looked like he was staring straight at her when she looked that she got a bit startled. He had short spiky hair and stubbles for a beard. His face was well proportioned with sharp features.
Afsana perused the picture for a little longer and smiled as she did. At that point her room door flung open. Afsana quickly hid the paper and photo under the pillow. “Hey sis” said the voice as her sister walked in. “Hiya” replied Afsana with a slight blush. The sisters began to chat as the sun set in the background and for a moment it seemed as if Amjad was a figment of her imagination.