How I Came to Islam
I THOUGHT I WAS HAPPY
Raised as a Christian, no one ever talked about Islam. My mom and dad always put a strong emphasis on God and why we should have a connection with him and going to church was a regular thing. At 14, my mom and dad split up eventually leading to divorce and I found myself back in the church looking for something. When I’d listen to the stories of the Bible and learn the lessons it contained it used to bring peace to my heart. Reading by myself, I’d get confused so I began to study the Bible more thoroughly.
The questions I’d ask would just throw up more questions. “You just have to have faith” was the usual response. Not really the response I was looking for.
So I STARTED SEARCHING
I started to read everything and anything related to Christianity and what I found made my heart ache. I found out about:
- The Council of Nicea
- Additions and deletions from the word of God
- How there was no original copy of the Bible and the Church knew this
- Saul (Paul) on the road to Damascus and how he spread the Christianity we know today
- How Paul’s version of the religion contradicted that of the original teachings of Jesus
My head was reeling! What should I do now? I couldn’t believe that God wanted us to follow him blindly.
So I started searching. Buddhism, Taoism, Catholicism, Agnosticism, Judaism, Wicca and even Atheism. But all of these ways of life had the same problem in my opinion. They didn’t tell me what my purpose in this life was, they didn’t worship one God alone and none of them put my heart at ease.
And then I found Islam.
I FOUND ISLAM BUT WAS I READY?
By this point in my journey I was 20 and studying for my Masters. Life wasn’t great. I had no money even though I was working 4 jobs, I was working so hard I was making myself ill and the amount of reading required was making my brain turn to mush. Every day I woke up not even knowing how I’d make it to the end.
I still believed in God but I couldn’t understand why He was making me suffer. I had already met my husband ( we weren’t married yet). He was Muslim but only just started practising.
I remember one day in particular something really special happened. I had been saving for months to buy an iPad. At this point I was financially strapped and walking 30 minutes uphill to get to classes as I couldn’t afford a bus pass.
I was on my lunch break and they were holding a competition to win an iPad and various other prizes. All my work colleagues had won a prize already so I thought I’d have a go. All I wanted was a gift voucher. Two tries later I still hadn’t won. I thought “well God hasn’t been there for me yet so I may as well give up.” And then my (future) husband called me. I explained to him what was going on and he said “Have you ever thought of praying to Allah for what you want? Click To Tweet” Obviously I said no. My God wasn’t Allah, in actual fact I didn’t know who He was but I knew He wasn’t in the habit of helping me. But what did I have to lose?
I made my first dua. It was the first time I’d prayed to God in a long time. The first time I’d called Him Allah. The first time I’d been sincere. Obviously I asked for the iPad, I asked for guidance, I asked for a sign.
And Allah swt delivered. I won the iPad. It was mine. But now what? Did this mean I had to become Muslim?
on my way to islam?
Unfortunately, that wasn’t the turning point for me. I carried on for a few months in the same vein. I didn’t become Muslim but I didn’t know what to do with the experience I had. Then I met an amazing sister.
It was Islamic Awareness Week and I could smell the food. What student turns down free food right? I found a niqabi sister (a sister wearing a face veil) talking to a group of non- Muslims. There was a blonde girl there asking her questions but it was the way she was asking them that made me tune in. Like she was accusing her of the crime of being Muslim, and that’s something I’m not cool with. So naturally I stepped in. Muslim, non- Muslim, Christian whatever, I believe we have free will and with that comes the will to wear, dress, practice what you believe in as long as it doesn’t harm anyone else.
As a thank you, the sister gave me a leaflet: A Brief Illustrated Guide to Understanding Islam. She also asked me a few questions about my lifestyle. At the time I didn’t eat pork, didn’t drink alcohol, believed in one God and associating no partners with him as well as an afterlife but I was still lost.
“Well you’re practically Muslim!” I said no thank you, took the leaflet and left. But she left me with a parting thought. “If you leave here and got hit by a bus, where do you think you’ll end up?” I was under no illusions, my immediate thought was hell and she knew it.
I read the leaflet and sunhanAllah, a few pages in I was convinced. Islam was for me, so now what? I did what most people did and went onto Google. How do I become Muslim?
a non-muslim in a mosque?!
I went to the mosque the niqabi sister said she went to, Green Lane Masjid in Small Heath Birmingham to find out what this ‘Islam’ was all about.
I tried to dress as modestly as possible and it took me 3 attempts to pluck up the courage to get through the door. Ramadhan was coming up so that was the topic. I sat quietly in the back, conscious that I may be sticking out like a sore thumb. The call to pray rang out mid class and I nearly jumped out of my skin.
“Sister, would you like to join us in prayer?”
“No thank you, I’ll just sit here.” AWKWARD MUCH?! But again, no one made me feel out of place. I went back to that mosque every Saturday without fail, I couldn’t get enough. I even began learning Surah Fatihah, dressed like a Muslim but I still hadn’t taken my shahadah.
The day before Ramadhan. I’d done enough classes at the mosque to know Islam was for me. Next step, shahadah. So I sat down in my room, calm and quiet. Moon shining though the window and I took my shahadah. The night was so still you could hear a pin drop.
And that’s where my story really began, alhamdulillah.
I love to hear revert/ convert stories. If you’d like to share yours drop me an email inshaAllah.