(Then when you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allah…)
(Qur'an 3: 159)
(Certainly, Allah loves those who put their trust [in Him].)
(Qur'an 3: 159)
Whenever a decision has to be made, many of us become confused and hesitant, and this often results in headaches. Whenever presented with choices, a Muslim should consult others and perform that prayer which is prescribed for decision-making (Salaatul- lstikhaarah). You should think things through before making a final decision or before taking the first step in any given direction, but if convinced that one course is better than another, you should take action without wavering. The time for consultation and planning is then over and the time for action begins.
The Messenger of Allah (bpuh) consulted the Muslims on the day of Uhud. They advised him to go out for battle, and so he put on his armor and took his sword. When his Companions said, "Perhaps we have forced you (to go out) O` Messenger of Allah? Maybe you should stay in Madeenah," he answered, "It is not for a Prophet to don his armor (for battle) and then take it off before Allah makes a judgment between him and his enemy." Once the Messenger of Allah (bpuh) decided to go out, the matter needed no more deliberation. Instead, determination, action, leadership, and bravery were required.
Similarly, the Messenger of Allah (bpuh) consulted the Companions before the battle of Badr:
(…and consult them in the affairs) (Quran 3: 159)
(…and who [conduct] their affairs by mutual consultation….)
(Qur'an 42: 38)
They voiced their opinions, a firm decision was made, and they then went forth to do battle.
Always being hesitant is a defect in one's character and often leads to failure and confusion. I know people who for years have been oscillating between decisions that should have been routine and easy. It is they themselves who have invited failure and frustration to enter into their lives.
You should study the practicability of your plans and ideas. Give yourself time to think things through, seek counsel with experienced and wise people, and pray to your Lord to guide you to the best between two or more choices. But in the end take action and do not tarry or linger in making your decision.
After the Messenger of Allah (bpuh) died, many of the Arab tribes refused to pay Zakah (compulsory charity). Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) consulted with the people regarding how he should deal with the situation. The people, including 'Umar (may Allah be pleased with him), advised him not to wage war against those tribes. Nevertheless, after weighing the various arguments, Abu Bakr decided that they had to fight them. He was firm and resolute, and he did not waver in the least. He said, "By the One Who has my soul in His Hand, I will fight the one who makes a distinction between the prayer and the compulsory charity. By Allah, if they refuse me the headband that they used to give up to the Messenger of Allah, l will fight them over it." 'Umar said, "When l realized that Allah had opened Abu Bakr's heart (to fight), I knew that it was the truth." Abu Bakr, after weighing the options, made that tough decision. They fought the apostates and were victorious.
A characteristic of the hypocrite is to make a plan fail by endlessly questioning what should be done and by always requesting for the matter to be further deliberated upon.
(Had they marched out with you, they would have added to you nothing except disorder; and they would have hurried about in your midst [spreading corruption] and sowing sedition among you….)
(Quran 9: 47)
([They are] the ones who said about their killed brethren while they themselves sat [at home]: 'if only they had listened to us, they would not have been killed. 'Say: Avert death from your ownselves, if you speak the truth.) (Quran 3: 168)
Their favorite words are 'what if' or, 'would that we had done such and such' or, 'maybe' they are always wavering on unstable ground.
([They are] swaying between this and that, belonging neither to these nor to those…..) (Quran 4: 143)
At times they are with us and at other times they are with them. In times of crisis, they say:
('Had we known that fighting will take place, we would certainly have followed you.) (Quran 3: 167)
They lie constantly. In good times they are present, but should a difficult situation arise, they go into hiding or run away. One of them says:
('Grant me leave [to be exempted from Jihad] and put me not into trial.) (Quran 9: 49)
In order to flee from duty, they said before the battle of Ahzaab:
('Truly our homes lie open [to the enemy] `And they lay not open.)
(Qur'an 33: 13)