No matter how hard this material world may try, it will never ever be perfect. Even if you fly first-class, you may have a person snoring nearby, spoiling your serenity. Even if you install the best bathroom fittings, they cannot give you water when the municipality decides to cut-off the mains. Even if the best of food is prepared, you don’t always have the appetite for it, and so on.

The point is that nothing in this material world will be perfect. Rather, you win some and you lose some. Everything will have its pros and cons. The trick is to avoid the cons while enjoying the pros. For example, if a person is stuck with a chipped mug, then instead of cutting his lip over and over on the chipped portion, he will turn the mug the other way and drink from the intact portion. Similarly, if he has a couch that is sagging on one side, then instead of collapsing into the sagging section, he will avoid it and sit on the other side.

The same applies in marriage. No spouse is going to be perfect. If he’s wealthy then maybe he’s ill-mannered, and if he possesses good character then perhaps he’s lazy. Hence, we should never walk into a marriage expecting to find our ‘Mr. Perfect’, as he will only turn up in Jannah.

Instead, we need to be appreciative for the good in our spouses while avoiding becoming a test for them and bringing out their bad side. For example, if we know that our husband has a temper problem, then together with making du‘aa to Allah Ta‘ala to help him gain control over his temper, we should avoid doing those things that will spark his temper.

Obviously, this is not only for his sake (through saving him from the sin of becoming angry and then venting his anger) but will be for our own sakes as well, as it will make our marriage much more pleasant and will save us the misery of a confrontation. Hence, we should always avoid bringing out the worst in him.

The following incident highlights the very same point:

Shu‘aib bin Harb once proposed for the hand of a certain woman. When proposing, he divulged to the woman, “I have bad character.” To his surprise, the woman replied, “The person whose character is worse than yours is the person who brings out the bad character in you.” Hearing this, Shu‘aib declared, “In that case, it is most certainly you that I wish to marry! (i.e. if this is your mindset and attitude, then you will make a wonderful wife)” (Wafayaatul Aa’yaan vol. 2, pg. 471)

May Allah Ta‘ala bless us all to conduct in such a manner that we bring out only the best in others, aameen.