The expression “Let go and let God” means to submit and trust in God wholeheartedly. Often times this is easier said than done, but the better we get at doing this the easier and more enjoyable our lives become. Take the example of Moses, who when was first asked to go to Pharaoh he was reluctant:

[26:12] He said, “My Lord, I fear lest they disbelieve me. [26:13] “I may lose my temper. My tongue gets tied; send for my brother Aaron. [26:14] “Also, they consider me a fugitive; I fear lest they kill me.”

But later on his trust in God was unwavering.

[26:60] They pursued them towards the east. [26:61] When both parties saw each other, Moses’ people said, “We will be caught.” [26:62] He said, “No way. My Lord is with me; He will guide me.” [26:63] We then inspired Moses: “Strike the sea with your staff,” whereupon it parted. Each part was like a great hill.

God never burdens a soul beyond its means (2:286). This indicates whatever difficulty we are going through God knows that we are capable of handling it. That said, if we only submit to Him then it will not only prove the strength of our faith, but He will provide us with the best outcome.

All we can do is do our part, which is believing in God, the Hereafter, and leading a righteous life, but we leave the outcome 100% to God. Sometimes the outcome we receive was not what we were hoping for. When this happens is when we are tested. Do we submit or do we complain? If we complain we are being an objector, but if we submit then it shows that our actions correspond with our belief. We are showing that we know that God did not forget or make a mistake, but rather that God has another plan for our lives.

[17:11] The human being often prays for something that may hurt him, thinking that he is praying for something good. The human being is impatient.

(١١) وَيَدْعُ الْإِنْسَانُ بِالشَّرِّ دُعَاءَهُ بِالْخَيْرِ وَكَانَ الْإِنْسَانُ عَجُولًا

It is natural to want to have ease in our life, but sometimes in order to reach our potential we need to go through hardship because this is what it is required for our growth. And since God knows us best we happily submit to God’s will.

[90:4] We created the human being to work hard (to redeem himself).*

(٤) لَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الْإِنْسَانَ فِي كَبَدٍ

But often times when facing hardship we forget that God is running everything. The devil makes us think that it is others who are doing the choosing that is impacting our life e.g. our worldly boss, our teacher or professor, or some politician. It is natural to want to standup for ourselves to try to direct the situation so that we get the favorable outcome we desire. And there is nothing wrong with doing so, but if we want to be part of the elite of the elite in God’s kingdom we need to strive to do better.

[42:39] When gross injustice befalls them, they stand up for their rights. [42:40] Although the just requital for an injustice is an equivalent retribution, those who pardon and maintain righteousness are rewarded by GOD. He does not love the unjust. [42:41] Certainly, those who stand up for their rights, when injustice befalls them, are not committing any error. [42:42] The wrong ones are those who treat the people unjustly, and resort to aggression without provocation. These have incurred a painful retribution. [42:43] Resorting to patience and forgiveness reflects a true strength of character.

A prime example of this lesson in action is the history of Joseph. Joseph had many major events that dramatically altered the trajectory of his life’s plan from a youth to an adult. With each event we can see Joseph’s migration towards absolute submission to God.

  • Brothers asking to take Joseph with them
  • [12:11] They said, “Our father, why do you not trust us with Joseph? We will take good care of him. [12:12] “Send him with us tomorrow to run and play. We will protect him.”
  • Brothers deciding to leave Joseph in well (God’s inspiration)
  • [12:15] When they went away with him, and unanimously decided to throw him into the abyss of the well, we inspired him: “Some day, you will tell them about all this, while they have no idea.”
  • Merchants deciding to take Joseph and sell him in Egypt
  • [12:19] A caravan passed by, and soon sent their waterer. He let down his bucket, then said, “How lucky! There is a boy here!” They took him along as merchandise, and GOD was fully aware of what they did. [12:20] They sold him for a cheap price— a few Dirhams—for they did not have any need for him.
  • Governor deciding to buy Joseph
  • [12:21] The one who bought him in Egypt said to his wife, “Take good care of him. Maybe he can help us, or maybe we can adopt him.” We thus established Joseph on earth, and we taught him the interpretation of dreams. GOD’s command is always done, but most people do not know.
  • Governor’s wife accusing Joseph of attempting to molest her. Joseph defends himself, but matter is left to a witness from the family.
  • [12:25] The two of them raced towards the door, and, in the process, she tore his garment from the back. They found her husband at the door. She said, “What should be the punishment for one who wanted to molest your wife, except imprisonment or a painful punishment?” [12:26] He said, “She is the one who tried to seduce me.” A witness from her family suggested: “If his garment is torn from the front, then she is telling the truth and he is a liar. [12:27] “And if his garment is torn from the back, then she lied, and he is telling the truth.” [12:28] When her husband saw that his garment was torn from the back, he said, “This is a woman’s scheme. Indeed, your scheming is formidable. [12:29] “Joseph, disregard this incident. As for you (my wife), you should seek forgiveness for your sin. You have committed an error.”
  • Governor’s wife sending him to jail despite his innocence
  • [12:33] He said, “My Lord, the prison is better than giving in to them. Unless You divert their scheming from me, I may desire them and behave like the ignorant ones.” [12:34] His Lord answered his prayer and diverted their scheming from him. He is the Hearer, the Omniscient. [12:35] Later, they saw to it, despite the clear proofs, that they should imprison him for awhile.
  • Joseph asking his prison mate to remember him at his lord
  • [12:42] He then said to the one to be saved “Remember me at your lord.” Thus, the devil caused him to forget his Lord, and, consequently, he remained in prison a few more years.
  • King sending for Joseph to interpret his dream
  • [12:46] “Joseph my friend, inform us about seven fat cows being devoured by seven skinny cows, and seven green spikes, and others shriveled. I wish to go back with some information for the people.”
  • Joseph asking him to investigate the claims against him
  • [12:50] The king said, “Bring him to me.” When the messenger came to him, he (Joseph) said, “Go back to your lord and ask him to investigate the women who cut their hands. My Lord is fully aware of their schemes.” [12:51] (The king) said (to the women), “What do you know about the incident when you tried to seduce Joseph?” They said, “GOD forbid; we did not know of anything evil committed by him.” The wife of the governor said, “Now the truth has prevailed. I am the one who tried to seduce him, and he was the truthful one. [12:52] “I hope that he will realize that I never betrayed him in his absence, for GOD does not bless the schemes of the betrayers. [12:53] “I do not claim innocence for myself. The self is an advocate of vice, except for those who have attained mercy from my Lord. My Lord is Forgiver, Most Merciful.”
  • Joseph asking to be the treasurer of Egypt
  • [12:54] The king said, “Bring him to me, so I can hire him to work for me.” When he talked with him, he said, “Today, you have a prominent position with us.” [12:55] He said, “Make me the treasurer, for I am experienced in this area and knowledgeable.”
  • Joseph asking brothers what to do with the one who had the possession of the King’s cup
  • [12:70] When he provided them with their provisions, he placed the drinking cup in his brother’s bag, then an announcer announced: “The owners of this caravan are thieves.” [12:71] They said, as they came towards them, “What did you lose?” [12:72] They said, “We lost the king’s cup. Anyone who returns it will receive an extra camel-load; I personally guarantee this.” [12:73] They said, “By GOD, you know full well that we did not come here to commit evil, nor are we thieves.” [12:74] They said, “What is the punishment for the thief, if you are liars?” [12:75] They said, “The punishment, if it is found in his bag, is that the thief belongs to you. We thus punish the guilty.” [12:76] He then started by inspecting their containers, before getting to his brother’s container, and he extracted it out of his brother’s container. We thus perfected the scheme for Joseph; he could not have kept his brother if he applied the king’s law. But that was the will of GOD. We exalt whomever we choose to higher ranks. Above every knowledgeable one, there is one who is even more knowledgeable.

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