The Marriage Masterclass – Interviews Sister Maryam Lemu

Mufti Menk

Channel: Mufti Menk

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Salam Alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh My beloved brothers and sisters as promised, although a few minutes late, I am going to be joined by sister Miriam lemo in sha Allah in a few moments, who is a sister very hard working comes from Nigeria and she also comes from a family full of educators and mentors Mashallah. So she has a lot of experience when it comes to

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education and so on. And Mashallah, today we want to hear from her about the master class that she has and it's something really amazing because

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many people go through a lot when it comes to marriage and many people want to learn before marriage, about what marriage is all about and Mashallah she has put together a beautiful masterclass for those who are not yet married for those who are about to get married and for those who are married as well, so inshallah in a few moments I'm hoping that we can actually join her. Oh, here goes Mashallah Salam aleikum wa rahmatullah

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wa alaikum. Salaam wa rahmatullah wa barakato. It is hakalau Hydra and for having me Thank you so much. Baraka, Luffy consistent Maryam, I was just giving a little introduction about yourself very brief. And I mentioned that you come from Nigeria, Mashallah. And that you come from a family of educators. I know your brother, Chef nurudeen, your father chef, I'm at the bar Hong Rahmatullah LA. They've done a lot of great work. So your mom as well as Aisha was her name Rahmatullah Allah and the you know, the institute's that you guys are running really amazing work in Nigeria. And maybe you could tell us a little bit about yourself before we actually go into the topic of today, which

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is connected to the marriage masterclass that you have put together as a favor for the Omar Al Hamdulillah.

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So thank you so much. May Allah bless you, thank you for allowing me to share with your audience. What I'm doing the little humble contribution that I've put together. Well, yes, I am a motivational speaker. I'm a marriage counselor, and a premarital counselor, and Alhamdulillah we also run a very, very big Islamic secondary school, primary school nursery and creche here in Mindanao, but in other parts of Nigeria as well. So I'm the head of administration with the college itself. Alhamdulillah. So yes, if since it's brief, that's the summary of what I do. Just a quick one minute is not the MENA in Saudi Arabia near Makkah, it is Mina in Niger state, right in Nigeria, you've done your

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homework. Absolutely. It's midnight in Niger state about three to three hours from the capital Abuja. Mashallah, now you have put together a marriage masterclass. And it is years of work that has been compiled and, you know, produced in a way that can be beneficial to all categories of people, those who are not yet married, those who are about to marry, and those who are already married. So, tell us what, what motivated you to put this together?

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Well, Alhamdulillah my husband and I, today actually is our wedding anniversary, 30 years.

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Last, so after the roller coaster of ups and downs that every marriage goes through the good, the bad and the ugly, it's during a few years back, my husband and I sat together and felt since we counsel that out a lot of couples and when we get down to the root that crux of the issues they are facing you find a lot of pain and anguish could have been prevented had the undergone premarital counseling, and unlike in certain other faiths, and in certain cultures in the Muslim world. Generally the norm in most countries you don't find there's a standard set system in place that you have to undergo premarital counseling before doing your nikka so many go into marriage completely

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ignorant, bankrupt of what tools they need to navigate the obstacles and focus so much on the bling bling, wedding celebrations and miss out on what really matters, which is you know, learning about yourself developing yourself and then learning how to live with someone else and hopefully thrive and grow together inshallah. So the motive was to try and save a lot of pain and anguish and change the narrative that is my hope insha Allah. Shall I have heard a lot of good feedback from this marriage master class and that's the reason why we have you today to tell the world the rest of the world. So is this

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Only for Nigerians or everyone across the globe, I just want you to clarify

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Alhamdulillah. It's an online platform. So the course is available on my website, Marian limu.com. And anybody anywhere around the world, I think the other day, I was telling you, I have this student from Peru of all places, reaching out wanting to enroll in the program. And so yes, Alhamdulillah it's available for anyone anywhere around the world. That's the benefit of technology today.

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Mashallah, that's really, really amazing, you know, and I want to personally also, thank you for having put all this together. And, you know, you're basically giving it as a class, how long does it take? If basically, I enrolled today? What, what would I expect? By the time I come out? How long does it take? And what content Do you have, although I know a little bit, but I want you to give it to us inshallah. hamdulillah. Well, it's 72 videos that I recorded. So that was a lot of work. Each video ranges between about two to three minutes to up to 15 minutes, some that the topics are very heavy, I spend a lot more time peeling the layers and fleshing it out. But I tried to keep it bite

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size, because the world we live in today, obviously everyone wants instant, and, you know, so yes, Alhamdulillah, I have put together 72 videos, once you enroll in the course, it's a lifetime access, so and it's self paced, so it gives you an opportunity to take it when you feel like it. However, watching the videos alone is not where the course stops, there are assignments that I give you, you have to do some personality tests. So the Myers Briggs test is in there. And 16 personalities calm the disc profile tests, because I feel it's so important. We know ourselves before we commit into a relationship. Because the more we become more self aware, the more we are more mindful, it makes it

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so much easier to understand our partner better and be able to give the best of ourselves and hopefully receive that in return in sha Allah. So the takeaway for anyone who goes through the 72 videos, and completes all the exercises that are in there, and we have a support team, customer service team that are there to guide you every step of the way, if you have any challenges is that you will hopefully go into marriage, whenever you choose to get into it with realistic expectations. And you are right. The course is not just for people who are yet to be married. People who I have a couple who have been married 18 years who enrolled in the course about a month ago, and I was so

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shocked. And I called the lady and asked her, you know, why did you enroll in this course, she said, we've been miserable for 18 years, and we thought we should just go back to the ground and start building back up to see what we missed. So Alhamdulillah the takeaway is realistic expectations, knowing what tools you need to not only navigate, but make your relationship thrive, and hopefully be able to help you in the correct spouse selection, the warning signs to look out for and all the other topics that I cover.

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It's interesting. So actually, what I think is if those who are intending to marry

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did your course, both of them the bride and the groom, or you know, the husband and the wife, then it would be of greater benefit, don't you think because both people would be equipped with the same sort of understanding of what marriage is all about. And they would be able to fulfill each other's rights in a correct manner. So I think we should encourage both, you know, both of the spouses so say for example, if there's someone who has done the course before having identified the spouse, it would benefit them in a great way and they would be probably better equipped in the selection of a spouse. Because in today's world as you know there is a lot of emphasis wrongly given to our you

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know, outward appearance and material items. Whereas Islam has taught us to strike the correct balance. And I think if one does it before they have identified someone, it would equip them in that direction. And if they did it once they have identified the the spouse, then it would help them from day one to set the right foot in the front. So on.

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Tell us some of the topics like that you've you've discussed in this masterclass. Well, since they were 72 videos, I have to have a cheat sheet to go through this. Let me share a little bit of a background as well. Alhamdulillah I was privileged enough to see a beautiful relationship in my parents. They were married Alhamdulillah for 50 years until Allah called

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My mother home. But what we saw was something really beautiful and Alhamdulillah I was able to overtime after we got over the obstacles and the rough early years that my husband and I shared until we were able to find our groove and truly be committed to the relationship and become the best partners insha Allah for each other. Many unfortunately didn't get to see a beautiful home, many didn't get to see a beautiful example of what a good marriage in Islam is meant to look like. And so part of the reason why I actually created this course, is in the hopes that people will see what it's meant to be, because you can't give what you don't have. If you didn't see something beautiful,

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it's hard for you to create it. So by sharing these tips, I pray insha Allah that people will be able to experience what we are going through an even more insha Allah. So to answer your questions on the topic, I start off with expectations of marriage. Many people get married with unrealistic expectations, and then they fall flat on their face, unfortunately. So for me, I start with sharing the truth, the good, the bad, and the ugly truths about marriage, and demystifying a lot of those thoughts or impressions that people have, sometimes from fantasies from books or movies they've seen, and so on. So I start off with the expectations, then getting married for the right reasons,

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because a lot of people get married either due to pressure you find your siblings are all married, and everyone's like, what's wrong with you? Or your biological clock is ticking. What are you waiting for, and this and that. So I tried to make sure you know, get married for the right reason, using your reasons, using the guidelines and the Quran and in the teachings of Rasulullah sallallahu wasallam to help us be able to make the right choices and the right decisions. And then how will you know when you've reached that stage where you're actually getting ready to get married. Sadly, many don't know that they're not ready. They're just going straight in because they think, oh, I've

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reached the right age. So I tried to set more realistic targets that look, you're ready, when you've done this, you're ready. When you're self aware, you're ready when you really understand your habits, your good and bad habits and know how they can affect make and break your relationship. So I go through that. And then talk about what are your strengths. And the company you keep, you need to start looking around you and looking at the people surrounding you. Because if you carry certain friends with you into your marriage, they can actually destroy it. So I talked about that. And so then I talked about the qualities you need for a successful marriage. And I use our best practices

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to share what we have learned and what has worked for us Alhamdulillah and then do your homework before you get married. A lot of people don't investigate the person they're going to get married to before they dive in, and then later, they're in for a surprise. So I talk about how to do that in a very respectful manner, in an Islamic manner that will help you make sure you've dotted all your i's and crossed all your T's. And then of course, things to have in place before you get married, how you deal with toxic relationships and deal with baggage. A lot of people have gone through bad experiences growing up. And unfortunately, they manifest themselves in their new relationship.

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Sometimes it could be sexual abuse, sometimes they saw physical abuse, maybe one parent was beating up the other. And because we run a school, I get to hear these stories from a lot of children. And I always try to detox it, but toxic from them because they may carry on and think that's supposed to be the norm. Or it could affect their next relationship. So I tried to do that. I go into other topics like addictions, addictions to social media today are destroying marriages. When we counsel a lot of couples we find the fitna in social media is so bad. So we talk about addictions to pornography as well. addictions to many things that people of course, like drugs and so on. And then

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we go into where to find a spouse because that's the million dollar question for most people who are intending to get married. Then of course, I talk about the istikhara. And there's a beautiful video you shared about guidelines on doing istikhara Alhamdulillah. So I've got that as well on my platform, because you put it so perfectly. And then your wish list, what do you want, some people have a long wish list, and that person doesn't actually exist. So I have tried to make sure they have realistic expectations. And make sure that before you wish for something you have those qualities yourself. So I'll stop there. I'm sure you have more questions. But like I said, there are

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72 topics 72 episodes, and I go through so many questions to ask before you get married and a whole lot more.

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You know, this is very interesting, because every single point you've raised is very important, pertinent. You know, I'm a counselor myself and I can tell you it's very, very important if I would

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allow you to talk even for another whole hour. I think I will just keep nodding my head. That's another point. That's another point. So Mashallah, but this course is available online. And you know, it's I do know that obviously there is a little feat that would need to be paid in order to join these classes so that people take it seriously. And also it helps and and you know, towards more insha Allah, and we want to see much more than just the marriage class come from yourselves and inshallah, that people can benefit from more. But I heard that today today is specifically today, you're going to be giving a 50% discount on on the fee? Yes. Is that right? That's an anniversary

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special launched on your platform? Yes, insha Allah. So if anybody goes to Merriam lynda.com, they will see as soon as we had done, we obviously don't want them to go there now till we're finished. But as soon as you go to Merriam lynda.com, you will see the clock ticking the countdown. And during that period, you can get 50% off on the course. And like you said, yes, there is a fee and you'll find people to commit more and are more involved and, you know, ready to get their money's worth, so to speak, so that he assets for 24 hours only that they can redeem this insha Allah.

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Yes. And I do think it's very important for people to invest in this type of education in this type of empowerment, because it's the rest of your life. You know, I see so many cases of people who just got married because they suddenly got up one day and said, You know what, I think I need to get married, or they saw someone who they felt was, was a good person, and they didn't even realize that person might be good, but they might not be ready at all. And therefore you find the two good people sometimes but they don't know how to navigate. It's like a person just been given a car and told Okay, do you know how to press these pedals? And they say yes and no key right now you can go but

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there are so many other rules of the road that you need to know. Similarly when it comes to marriage so much that you need to know so Subhanallah You know, I'm definitely one who promotes this type of thing and that's the reason why I immediately told you, you know what, let's go live on Instagram and inshallah we'll let the world know that this exists. So money on label.com and as soon as you click on that you will see a countdown you can actually access the entire masterclass from there. And it's a life it's a life access to that. So Alhamdulillah Mashallah, that's, that's really, really amazing. Now, have you gone through perhaps,

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you know, the latest stages of burying children, and perhaps resolving problems that you may that may arise, you know, so that we don't end up in a divorce?

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Have I personally raised my children to try and prevent it? Is that what you mean? No, what was the question? I misunderstood the question. No, I mean, in the course itself, how far have you gone? Like, Have you discussed problem solving? And, you know, children and, and so on? Or?

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Oh, no. And I talked about that during the premarital phase, I have a particular episode where I talk about how important it is to talk about children. How many do you want? Do you Yeah, how many do you with Allah's blessing want? And then when do you want to have children, some choose to pop those kids nine months after the wedding thinking their marriage is going to get stronger, whereas I am of the opinion that you really do need to get to know each other and have settled into the groove of the marriage before you bring this beautiful soul into this world that didn't ask to be born. And a lot of people rush to have kids. When we counsel couples you find, okay, they have like three kids

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or four kids, and she's expecting now, but their marriage is on the rocks and you're like, Okay, what did you think was gonna happen? Oh, no, I thought the more kids I had, it will bring us closer together. And these poor children are brought into a world of chaos. So I go into the nitty gritty dangers of, you know, not really getting to know each other well enough and make sure you really are settled in the relationship before having kids. And of course, you need to talk about how many Yes, Alhamdulillah I do.

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Yeah. And then if there is marital discord, and sometimes it could end up in divorce after trying every avenue of resolving it.

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Would you have you have you advised on what what you know what to expect if a divorce happens? Absolutely. Because I do share that sometimes marriages don't work. And it's in one of the episodes that I recorded where sometimes in spite of all your good efforts, you have tried everything you've exhausted all options, sometimes even having brought in a meeting.

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Which I often say do at the very, very end, when you've tried everything to make your marriage work, then of course it's not. It's frowned upon by Allah, but it is permissible that we do break the marriage. One thing I caution parents to be careful of is if there is a divorce and you have children, don't ever bring the children into the battlefield. Don't make them your lawyers that your amateur psychiatrists don't say, oh, look what your father has done. Or look what your mother did the other day, don't damage the kids because you are angry with their parents, you know, with one parent, try and make sure you part amicably so that the kids don't find themselves trying to pick

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sides are still key, who should I show my allegiance I pledge my allegiance to or show my loyalty to so I tried to make sure yes, definitely, if you've tried everything, and you find you're being broken, you're depreciating in value or what you hope to achieve in that relationship. You're not getting then after exhausting all options. When I say is fight, you're going to fight fight to make your marriage work. But if it's not going to work, then it's better to go away with dignity and part with respect with good, other other and make sure that things don't get nasty and deteriorate. Absolutely, that's actually a chronic injunction. And unfortunately, a lot of people, especially

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Muslims, well, we deal mainly with Muslims. So we see them becoming so ugly and nasty. They use the children, they, they actually prohibit one of the parents from even seeing their children and and communicating with them. But I saw one of the questions that was asked just now on the screen here was about forced marriages to say that there are parents who are forcing their children into marriage, what advice would you give them and their parents? So obviously, you have a scholar, but I do have an episode where I talk about that. But I'll just say a couple of words on that, that in the eyes of Allah marriage is two consenting adults, and correct me if I'm wrong, both the spouses have

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to want to get married to each other. There is no forced marriage to the best of my knowledge. But I asked you to do the topic more justice?

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No, absolutely. There is no forced marriage. And you know, I had a case recently where there was a sister who told me I'm being forced to marry one of my cousins, and I don't want it, my parents are forcing me and so on. So I said, Well tell the guy that you're being forced, so he should back off, you know, from his side. So when she told the guy that I'm being forced, he said, Oh, that's good. I don't mind, you know, stuff that will last. So basically, you have some really ignorant people out there. And sometimes it's, it's a cult, it's definitely a culture in some parts of the world, I think. And it's got nothing to do with Islam. In fact, you know, if there is no happiness and no

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consent of the bride herself, then that is not a valid because in Islam, actually, she needs to consent. So May Allah make it easy. And I just want to say that people blame Islam, but it's not Islam, it is the culture of the area. And sometimes, you know, parents who are

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perhaps, who have promised their children at a young age to perhaps their relatives, or whoever else. And that is so wrong. Children are not a commodity that you can actually give and receive as you wish, but they are an amount of from Allah subhanho wa Taala. So that's really a very, very important matter. And I'm glad that someone raised it. So

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while we're waiting for a few questions, perhaps that we might answer is there anything else that you'd like to perhaps address on this matter? Or, you know, let us know regarding your course. Alhamdulillah? Well, I don't only have the course. But actually Marion limited calm is a website, where I hope it's more like a one stop shop for people who want to strengthen their relationship with Allah. So I have a page on spirituality and of course, I've got you there in your Academy man Academy. And then of course, other academies and other resources that I've been able to tap into, that I believe will be of benefit to others, because I found them to be very useful. I have a page

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on marriage, where I talk about how to strengthen the bond between you and your spouse, how to resolve conflict, and then I have my one on parenting as well. So there are there's more than just the premarital masterclass there and I'm hoping it'll be a safe space where people can hopefully learn grow. I have an area on personal growth and development so that we can build ourselves build our nerves, and then build our home in sha Allah. So I've got that I would love those since you're waiting for questions if you could talk about because I do have a whole section on rights and obligations of spouses to one another. Because that's a topic I believe, when we counsel will love

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my husband and I that is the one area you find people are actually

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bankruptcy of knowing their rights and what their obligations are. And I keep emphasizing that we're going to have to answer to Allah for fulfilling those obligations that actually fulfilling them. It's what fulfills half of our ibadah. A lot of people think, oh, then a guy's done. And that's it, you've done half of your face. So go do the five pillars and all the other things. So that big misconception I would love if you could say something about that.

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In Sharla, you know, I'm just thinking about it, it requires specialized topics, and lectures to address those matters. And I agree with you completely, people are unaware of what their rights are. A few days ago, someone also sent me an email saying, Please, can you tell me what my rights are? Because my husband is very abusive is, you know, he doesn't really care about me and so on. So it was a really it was it was a tough one. But yes, I do agree, we need specialized talks, inshallah, and I will, I will definitely, perhaps repeat some of what I've said, and even add on to it and try and refine, and make it easier to learn. What I noticed with some of my talks is, as I've developed

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and grown a little bit older, the perhaps the method of, you know, the method of propagating that message and getting across has become a little bit more palatable, it's become a bit easier for people to digest and understand because we've now got the years of experience that we didn't have when we initially began the Dow, and so on. But something I just want to

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pick up from what I noticed now is, you know, people are surprised you are from Nigeria, Mashallah. And there is so much happening in Nigeria. And the good thing is, I've always spoken about Nigeria, and how beautiful the place is, there are so many balama and so many sisters who have studied the deen, who are doing a lot of good work. In fact, there are a lot of sisters organizations, as well in Nigeria. So it's very good to showcase what you've done. In order for the world to know that, you know, every country has some form of gift to offer the globe and to offer the oma and Alhamdulillah we appreciate that Allah has blessed you and has blessed not only yourself but Nigeria as well as a

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country with a lot of good. And may Allah continue to use you to serve the oma and your family and May Allah continue to use all of us to serve this beautiful woman. So I think we we were very happy with what we've heard today. And I still want to once again encourage everyone to say, Mariam limo.com you should enroll you know, for this particular course, and so many other things that you will find there of benefit, and inshallah we pray for sister Miriam that Allah bless you and your family, and grant you every goodness. So is there any final words you'd like to say inshallah? Sister Miriam? Um, no, I think you've done enough justice to this just Yes, enroll in the course of

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You don't have to be single to enroll in it. Ideally, intending couples should enroll, but also if you're married, and you want to check and see what did I miss, especially if things aren't going well. However, we bring our 30 years of our best practices, where today Alhamdulillah we've become best buddies, biggest cheerleaders of one another, and Alhamdulillah our marriage is thriving and we ask Allah to continue to bless it and bless the marriages of everybody out there because once the home is in order insha Allah everything in society falls in place, and that's why I'm trying so hard to make sure we go into marriage with right expectations. We get it right, our children will insha

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Allah turn out right and when they are turned out there into the world, they will be better citizens of the oma better citizens of this planet that Allah has Tron interested in us as an Amana inshallah. So that is my ultimate goal. Just like hello hiren so much for everything. barnacle Luffy calm It was lovely to hear from you and Mashallah my brothers my sisters, did you hear that 30 years of experience all compacted into a marriage master class and there is so much more as sister Miriam has said she'll come thank you so much for joining me today sister Miriam. May Allah bless you and inshallah we hope to meet again as salaam aleikum wa rahmatullah wa barakato o Alaikum. Salaam, wa

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Rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh

The Marriage Masterclass - Interviews Sister Maryam Lemu
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