Assalaamu alaikum Kamil,
(smile) What the other posters have said is very true. greenhill basically offered the istikhara prayer. For a good explanation of this, try this link: http://www.islamicity.com/articles/A...ef=MM1201-4985
And it is also true that what we want, may not be what is best for us, either in this life or the Next. We don't know.
A friend of mine offered another explanation, that intrigued me. She suggested that perhaps sometimes Allah doesn't give us something we ardently desire, because it makes us work harder in this life, and gives us something to look forward to in the Next. It ties in a bit with the idea that what happens is what is best for us, but I feel it goes a little further. (smile) It is just an opinion, but I offered it in case it could be of use to you. It helped me, at any rate.
We continued to discuss various things that we desire, examining our own deepest desires, and those of people we know. And it was rather fascinating. What we wanted was very diverse. But it seemed a pretty constant thing that what we really
craved the most… we did not
get, even though we made sometimes great efforts to get it. (smile) But what we also noticed, was that we could very easily notice what another
person was blessed with. But that we tended to notice our own blessings less
Let me give you an example: a woman craves a child. She does all the prayers, treatments, health tips, you name it. But she doesn't have a child. But she does have a really wonderful husband who cares about her very much. She has a comfortable life. She has a lot of freedom to pursue her interests.
Another woman has many children. She has a pretty good husband. Her life is comfortable enough. But what she really craves is the freedom to do some things she'd like to do, without being gossiped about by members of her close-knit community.
Each woman thirsts for something. She doesn't get it. But each woman also has some blessings in her life. For some reason, Allah has not given these women what they want the most. But He has Gifted them with some other nice things.
(smile) You probably still want to know how to get what you ardently want. Well, basically, you need to make all the efforts that you can. Not just prayers, but concrete actions, like studying or making something or considering novel ways to approach an employer (just sending in Cvs tends to be unfruitful. There are books on things you can do to be noticed), or approaching a woman you'd like to marry (twinkle. There are books on this, too). You must
make these efforts. You can't just wait for Allah to Hand it over to you on a plate! (smile) Yes, it sounds shocking when I say it like this. After all, is Allah our servant to do our bidding?! Astaghfirullah! But yet, do we not sometimes behave like this in our approach to things, when we just pray and wait for something to happen without making all the necessary efforts?
Anyway, after you've gathered information, taken advice from people, thought about what you can do, you do the istikhara prayer... then do your efforts... and get on with your life. Maybe what you want will happen, maybe not. But you can rest secure in the knowledge that you have done everything you should, and that you trust in God.
And then you perhaps should look at all the things that you do
have. Write them out, maybe. Perhaps ask other people what they think you are blessed with, if you can't see it.
And if you still feel an emptiness in your heart, know that perhaps you have put this desire in a place it shouldn't be. Because only
Allah should be there. And Allah is very filling. You shouldn't need
anything else apart from Him. Perhaps God isn't Gifting you with what you want because you would make an idol of it, and try to fill your heart with it?
Consider the following story (regarding verses 75-78 of Surah 9, as written in this book: http://www.amazon.ca/Meaning-Holy-Qu...yahiya+emerick
A man named Tha'labah went to the Prophet and asked for him to beseech God to make him rich. The Prophet said to him, “Woe to you,Tha'labah, a little thanks is much better than what you won't be able to handle.” Then the Prophet told him that if he really wanted riches, then he should invoke God to give them to him. Th'alabah swore the oath that is contained in verse 75. The Prophet then gave Tha'labah a herd of sheep, and within a short amount of time the herd expanded greatly, causing Tha'labah to become very wealthy. Because of the size of his herds, though, he also had to move progressively farther from Medina, resulting in his more and more infrequent visits to worship in the mosque. Later on, when the Prophet sent people to collect the charity tax from Tha'labah, he put off the tax-collectors on two separate occasions. This passage was then revealed about him ,and someone went to him and told him, “You're ruined! A passage has been revealed about you!” So Tha'labah hurried to the Prophet and begged him to accept his charitable contribution, but the Prophet told him that God has forbidden him from accepting his charity. Then Tha'labah began throwing dust on his own head in sorrow, and the Prophet told him, “It's because of what you did. I gave you anorder, and you disobeyed it.” After the Prophet's passing, Tha'labah went to Caliph Abu Bakr and begged him to accept his charity, and Abu Bakr refused, saying the Prophet never accepted it. The same thing happened during the rule of 'Umar ibn al-Khattab and Uthman ibn Affan (d.656), and Tha'labah passed away in despair during Uthman's reign. (Ibn Kathir
) It is said that God did not accept his repentance because he harboured hypocrisy in his heart. (Ma'ariful Qur'an
(smile) Kamil, by all means make your efforts, and I will make du'a for you, too. I hope you get what you want, if it is good for you. But, if after all your efforts and prayers, you don't
get what you want, realize that Allah really does
Know better what is best for us, even if we cannot comprehend why.
May Allah, the Wise and Loving, Gift us with what is best for us, and Help us to let go of what is not good for us.