Obeying the husband in Ma`ruf

Q: I wish to know about the following: (Part No. 19; Page No. 217) 1- My husband follows the Qur'an and the Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet) and urges me and others to adhere to the Sunnah, but I do not listen to him or follow him. 2- What is the ruling on going out in his absence and without his permission to visit my family and relatives?3- Were I to obey what my husband says, women would laugh at me and accuse me of fearing him.

A: Firstly, if your husband is as you have described, it is obligatory upon whoever hears him to respond to him as long as what he preaches is in accordance with the Book of Allah (Exalted be He) and Sunnah of His Messenger (peace be upon him). You should be the first to answer his call, obey him with regard to Ma`ruf (that which is judged as good, beneficial, or fitting by Islamic law and Muslims of sound intellect) and thank Allah for endowing you with such a husband who encourages you to do good. May Allah guide you to what pleases Him. Secondly, you are not permitted to visit anyone, a relative or otherwise, except after taking your husband's permission. It is a way of maintaining good relations with him and guarding the family. However, if in some way he has indicated that he does not mind your going out to visit your Mahrams (unmarriageable relatives) or to fulfill some needs, then it is the same as his explicit verbal consent. Thirdly, you should obey your husband whenever he commands you to do good, in order to please Allah and (Part No. 19; Page No. 218) fulfill your husband's rights. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, "Anyone who seeks to please Allah by displeasing the people, Allah will be pleased with him and will make the people pleased with him. Anyone who seeks to please the people by displeasing Allah, Allah will be displeased with him and will make the people displeased with him." May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet, his family, and Companions.