Trust in God
By: Sayyid Mahdi as-Sadr
Trust in God means to rely upon Him and to commend all affairs to Him by diverting from anyone or anything else. The source of trust in God is power of heart and conviction. Likewise, loss of trust in God is originated from feebleness of heart and conviction and influence of apprehensions and illusions:
“Allah is Sufficient for the needs of whoever trusts in Him. (65:3)”
“Allah loves those who trust Him. (3:159)”
“(Muhammad), say, ‘Nothing will happen to us besides what Allah has decreed for us. He is our Guardian. In Allah alone do the believers trust.’(9:51)”
“If Allah is your helper, no one can defeat you. However, if He abandons you, who would help you? The true believers trust in Allah. (3:160)”
Amirul-Mu'minin (a) said: “Regarding all of your affairs, seek the refuge of your Lord, for you are seeking the refuge of a sheltering haven and powerful sanctuary1.”
“Within his sermons to his son, Luqman said: Son, for him who is unconvinced and ill-intentioned in the matter of seeking earnings, he should learn lessons from the fact that Allah has created him and guaranteed his sustenance in three states; He secured him and gave him his decided shares of sustenance without exerting any efforts or planning for any proposal in gaining them. First, when he was in mother’s womb, Allah was giving him his sustenance without being exposed to coldness or heat. Then, Allah caused him to go out to this world and gave him his shares of sustenance, which were sufficient and nutrient, from the mother’s breast while he had no power to earn. Then, when he was weaned, Allah gave him his share of sustenance out of the earnings of his parents who were very kind to him to the degree that they preferred him to themselves in many situations. When he attained maturity and went on seeking earnings for himself, he became unable to stand it, mistrusted his Lord, denied the rights that he should defray from his earnings, and behaved stingily with his dependents and himself. All that was because of his expecting scarcity, mistrusting Allah and suspecting His promised recompense in this world and the world to come. See, my son, how evil such man is!”
Imam as-Sadiq (a) said: “Richness and honor are wandering. They settle only when they find a situation of trust in Allah2.”
He (a) also narrated that Allah revealed to Prophet David (a): “For any one of My servants who relies upon Me heartily exclusively, then the heavens and the earth plot against him, I will surely grant him an exit between them to escape their plots. But for the servant who relies upon any of My creatures, I will cut the rope that links him to the heavens and will sink the earth under his feet and, then, I will not care where he will perish3.”
“He who is given three things will not be deprived of three others: he who is granted supplication to Allah will not be deprived of response; he who is granted thankfulness will not be deprived of increase; he who is granted trust in Allah will not be deprived of His security.” Read in the Book of Allah: ‘Allah is Sufficient for the needs of whoever trusts in Him. (65:3)’
‘If you give thanks, I shall give you greater (favors) (14:7).’
‘Pray to Me for I shall answer you prayers. (40:60).’”
Reality of Trust in God
Trust in God does not mean to neglect the means that achieve benefits and to lift no single hand for facing events and crises. As a matter of fact, trust in God is to confide in and depend on Him exclusively, because He being the source of goodness, the originator of reasons, the predominant over the creatures, and the only able to give success. To have such trust in God should not conflict with the reliance on the natural means and the outward reasons for achieving the aims, such as supplying for traveling, armament for fighting against the enemies, treatment against diseases, and guard against dangers. All these are necessary for protecting man and achieving his aims. God has decided to make all matters proceed according to their natural reasons. Notwithstanding, it is necessary to depend upon and trust in God for achieving the purposes.
As he noticed a Bedouin neglecting hobbling his camel for he had relied upon God exclusively, the Prophet (S) instructed him: “Hobble your camel then trust in Allah exclusively.”
Ranks of Trust in God
Like the variety of faith, there is a great variety among people in ranks of trust in God. Some are forerunners in this regard: they devoted themselves completely to God and neglected everything except Him. Those are the prophets, their successors, and the saints.
As an example on the best picture of trust in God, it is narrated that when Prophet Abraham (a) was in his way to the fire, the angel Gabriel met him in the air and asked whether he would do him anything. He answered: “For you, you can do me nothing. I depend on God Who is the best Guardian.” Then the angel Michael met him and suggested that he would extinguish that fire since rain and water had been under his disposal. The prophet also rejected. Then the angel of wind met him and suggested that he would cause that fire to fly away, but the prophet also rejected. Then the angel Gabriel came to him again and asked him to supplicate to God. Abraham said: “My supplication is worthless so long as He knows my current state best4.”
Advantages of Trust in God
Man, in this life, is exposed to calamities, problems, and crises against which he fights. He, once, overcomes, and is overcome in other situations. In most cases, such calamities knock man down and make him helpless and brokenhearted. Thus, man lives in permanent worry because he anticipates loss, poverty, and ailment. It is true that modern civilization has helped in alleviating burdens of life by the availability of means of comfort, but it has failed to supply mentalities with tranquility. Worry is still casting its shadows on people and collaring the necks resulting in multiplication of mental diseases and events of suicide and insanity in the most civilized countries.
Through its moral constitution, the Islamic Sharia could alleviate the worries of people and supply them with huge spiritual energies, such as tolerance, steadfastness, trust, and confidence. To adhere to this fact achieves peace of mind and replaces fear with security.
After all, trust in God is one of the most important factors that attain self-dignity, self-respect, and peace of conscience. People that are worthiest of adhering to trust in God are the celebrities and reformists. They are in need for willpower and self-determination for facing others’ obstinacy and overstepping many obstacles and barriers.
How to Acquire Trust in God?
We can acquire trust in God by:
• Keeping in mind the Verses and traditions that confirm the virtues of trust in God.
It is narrated that Imam al-Hussein (a) composed the following: “If calamities of time bite you, do not seek the refuge of the creatures. Do not ask anybody except God the Distributor of the sustenance. If you live for a long time and wander in this world from the west to the east, you will not find anybody who is able to give you happiness or remove your unhappiness.”
It is also narrated that Amirul-Mu'minin (a) composed: “I have satisfied myself with that which God has decided for me, and I have entrusted my affairs with my Creator. As He used to treat me charitably in the past, He will keep on in the rest.
• Strengthening belief in God, trust in His good turn, and considering His being the source of goodness, originator of reasons, and able to do everything.
• Paying attention to the nice doing of God and His outstanding care for man all over stages of life, and keeping in mind that God will surely guard him who depends upon Him and save him who seeks His help.
• Learning lessons from the changeability of this life.
Many poor people have become rich, many rich people have become poor, many celebrities have become paupers, and many paupers have become celebrities.
Finally, to gain true trust in God is to satisfy oneself with His acts in situations of joy and misery.
1. Quoted from Nahj ul-Balagha.
2. Quoted from al-Wafi; part 3 page 56 (as quoted from al- Kafi).
3. Quoted from al-Wafi; part 3 page 56 (as quoted from al- Kafi).
4. Quoted from Safinat ul-Bihar; 2/683 (as quoted from Bayan ut-Tanzil).