"...many times, I would ask my students: "Who is more powerful: Allah, or America?" Confused, they would answer: "Allah, of course." I would then say to them: "You believe that Allah is more powerful than America?" They'd reply: "Yes," to which I would say: "By Allah, had the Arab governments believed that Allah is more powerful than Israel - which is weaker than America - they would not have abandoned their religion in such a manner, and they would not have had such fear of Israel."
The reason for people's exhaustion and loss is the fact that they do not deal with Allah as if He is a deity. They deal with Allah simply as if He Created this existence, but has no involvement in it. Therefore, they are not affected by any encouragements and admonishments. Had it been the case that we dealt with Allah, feared Allah in our gatherings just as we would fear an intelligence agent, we would pay close attention to every word that came out of our mouths. So, we fear some soldier - this intelligence agent - more than we fear Allah, as the Angels record every single word that we speak. We do not consider this, and we are not afraid when we speak. However, if it were said to us that in this gathering, there is an intelligence agent present, we would pay close attention to every single word that comes out of our mouths. So, fear of a single intelligence agent has become more than it is of Allah.
If we were to deal with Allah as having the same power that the dean of the college has - with his ability to pass, fail, accept, reject as he pleased - our behavior with Him would be quite different, indeed. If we were to deal with Allah as if He were like the ruler of a country who gives visas, money, jobs, provision, etc. - if we were to deal with Allah in such a manner, human beings would look so insignificant in our eyes. If we were to deal with Allah - the Mighty and Majestic - as being the One besides Whom none is worthy of worship, we would be very relieved, as the Salaf would deal with Allah - the Mighty and Majestic - as being the Mighty, the Self-Sufficient, the Concealer, the Able, the Avenger, the Compeller, the Subduer, etc.
A single verse or hadith in their lives would work wonders...
وَإِن يَمۡسَسۡكَ ٱللَّهُ بِضُرٍّ۬ فَلَا ڪَاشِفَ لَهُ ۥۤ إِلَّا هُوَۖ وَإِن يَمۡسَسۡكَ بِخَيۡرٍ۬ فَهُوَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَىۡءٍ۬ قَدِيرٌ۬
"And if Allah touches you with harm, none can remove it but He, and if He touches you with good, He is Able to do all things."
So, Allah - the Mighty and Majestic - is the One who removes harm, and He is the one who bestows good. Allah - the Mighty and Majestic - is the Provider, as the Prophet said: "No soul dies except that it has obtained all of the provision it was meant to obtain. So, fear Allah, and increase in your requests." When we are sick, for example, the Messenger of Allah said: "No sickness befalls a servant, and he places his hand on the area of pain, saying: 'I ask Allah, the Mighty, the Lord of the Throne, to cure me,' except that Allah removes his pain, unless it is that of death." If he supplicates seven times: 'I ask Allah, the Mighty, the Lord of the Throne, to cure me,' he must be cured! So, when we get sick, we traverse the entire land looking for hospitals, doctors, pharmacists, etc., and it never crosses our minds to place our hand on the affected area, and say: 'I ask Allah, the Mighty, the Lord of the Throne, to cure me.'
Upon leaving our home, it does not cross our minds for a single minute to say: 'In the Name of Allah, I depend on Allah, and there is no might nor power except with Allah,' to which an Angel would answer us, saying: "You are guided, protected, and sufficed." So, the devils would stand, saying to each other: "What will you do with a man who has been guided, protected, and sufficed?" And you remain in this protection until you return home!
Once, they came to Abu ad-Darda' while he was in the mosque, saying to him: "O Abu ad-Darda'! Your house has been burned down!" He replied: "By Allah, it has not been burned down." They said: "It has been burned down!" He replied: "By Allah, it has not been burned down." They went to see that the fire had consumed everything in the area, and had stopped right at Abu ad-Darda''s house, and he did not even get up to go see for himself. They came back and asked him: "What drove you to insist that it had not been burned down?" He replied: "The Messenger of Allah had taught me some words that, if I say them, I will not be stricken with any harm," - he is secure! - "'O Allah, I seek refuge with You from sadness and grief, and I seek refuge with You from inability and laziness, and I seek refuge with You from cowardliness and stinginess, and I seek refuge with You from being overpowered by debts and men,' so, I made this supplication."
In regards to this same supplication, Abu Umamah narrated: "I was sitting in the mosque, when the Messenger of Allah asked me: "What is wrong, Abu Umamah?" I replied: "I am in distress because of a debt that I owe." The Prophet then told me: "Supplicate with these words ('O Allah, I seek refuge with You from sadness and grief...')." So, I supplicated with these words, and Allah removed my distress, and paid off my debt." That's it! He taught him a few words!
...So, they would deal with Allah from the standpoint of His actually being a deity, and that He is the Self-Sufficient, and that He is the Powerful, and that He is the Generous, and that He is the Mighty, and that He is the Wise, and that He is the Knowing. So, if they wanted knowledge, they would request it from Allah, and if they wanted success, they would request it from Allah, and if they wanted victory, they would request it from Allah. This is how they were always with Allah, and this does not come about except by constantly being connected with Allah - the Mighty and Majestic - the upward connection to Allah, the connection of those who are travelling towards Allah, the Lord of the Worlds.
Because of this, if you desire happiness, there is no choice but for you to search for Allah, the Mighty and Majestic: "If you ask, ask of Allah. If you seek help, seek help from Allah, and know that if the whole world were to gather together to benefit you with anything, it would not benefit you except with something that Allah had already prescribed for you, and that if it had gathered together to harm you with anything, it would not harm you except with something Allah had already prescribed against you. The pens have been lifted, and the pages have dried."
Case closed, and the hadith is authentic. As long as the hadith is authentic, that's it..."
['at-Tarbiyah al-Jihadiyyah wal-Bina''; 5/28-31]
(SHEIKH 'ABDULLAH YUSUF 'AZZAM (ASY-SYAHID, INSYAALLAH)