If you asked me 6 months ago what my religion was, I would tell you Christianity. If you asked me why, I would tell you because it’s all I have ever known, it’s what my grandparents are, it’s who my grandparents are. But here is what you don’t know. I’ve always prayed to God. Always. I always felt that God was listening, that He hears our prayers if we just humble ourselves to Him. I can’t tell you exactly when I knew that God was real, I’ve just always known. Yes, I believe in Jesus Christ (peace be upon him), I follow his teachings (more so now than ever before) and I know that he done great and amazing things, through GOD. Jesus says in the bible that he is nothing without his Father. I’m not going to go back and forth with scriptures. I love Christians, Jews, Hindus, Atheists, etc. I don’t judge. Anyway, my point was, I didn’t know WHY I associated with the Christian faith other than “just because my family did”. Fast forward to February 28, 2015, I find out that my best friend of 29 years has died. She was 33 years old. I’ve known her since I was 4 years old. In kindergarten is was like we were looking for each other, like our souls were connected. You can ask any of my classmates from way back then, and if they remember, they can tell you that we were inseparable.
I was lost. I was devastated. I was broken. I was scared of myself. But, no one understood, not really. Maybe I wasn’t accepting of the ones who tried, I don’t know.. all I know is that I was a different person. All I knew was that I needed someone, something, to make it all make sense. I turned to this and that and finally I started searching for a closer relationship with God. Because when no one else is there, God is there. Always, God never leaves us. He never abandons us. He is merciful. Even if your sins reach as high as the sky, God forgives us, if we just ask.
I started questioning what I’d heard my whole life. I started looking into different religions and looking at the similarities of the great religions of the world. I always believed in Jesus (peace be upon him) but I never worshiped him as God. I had questions that no one has ever answered for me answered in Islam. Islam makes sense to me. Islam and Muslim simply mean to believe in one God and willful submission to God. That’s all Islam means. There isn’t beheadings and torture and kill, kill, kill. That’s all media rhetoric. It’s not true. It’s fabrications and misinterpretations and distorting verses. If any of you have any questions at all, ask me. If I can’t answer them, then I can find someone who can, or I can give you resources and references. Please don’t think I would take my salvation blindly. That I would risk my soul on something that I haven’t researched and something that I don’t fully understand or believe in. Yes, it’s been hard. I have lost friends, I have lost family, simply because I believe in God? It doesn’t make sense to me, but God knows best. If you ask me today what religion I am, I will tell you I am Muslim. I am not perfect. No, I don’t go out in Jacksonville wearing a hijab (headscarf), simply because, I don’t feel it’s safe, due to the number of PTSD Veterans that we have in this town. I am Muslim but I am not a terrorist. Terrorism has no religion. Please don’t hate me. Please let me show you that Islam is peaceful and Islam is love. I just ask for acceptance. I will never push my faith on you. I respect all religions and people who have no religion. I am finally a happier me.