Right Direction, Wrong Result
Think about it this way. A person enters a competition to make Fried Chicken but instead makes Pasta. Now, that Pasta could be the best on Earth but that person would be disqualified immediately. Why? Cause though he made an excellent dish, it didn't meet the requirements of the competition.
We are all here for one goal. To worship Allah, but sometimes, often by mistake we devote most of our Energy to other things. I know this occurs here, in Pakistan and occurs in America as well. It probably occurs all over the world.
There are a multitude of so-called "Religious Families" where all the members practice Islam. They pray, fast, give sadaqah, etc. But if you really look at what their aiming for its not the Deen, its the Dunya. The Deen for them is a part time goal, not full-time like it should be. Islam is a thorough religion which covers every aspect, not subconsciously as many have made it but also consciously.
I'll give you an example of a family which I know. They can be branded religious and or not.
Family XYZ I'll call it. Family XYZ have 6 members, 4 children, two adults. The father is a teacher at Sunday School and all 4 students are all high achievers there. Now, Sunday School isn't really a degree for being Islamic but it's all unfortunately what the majority of Muslims have. My own parents were very active in Sunday School for many years. What I realized is that the Sunday School crowd does not always consist of practicing Muslims but it has many more families participating in it than other Islamic programs. So in a way Family XYZ is automatically considered religious because their active at SS. Compared to the rest of their extended family, they are religious but only in relative terms. What's wrong with them?
The problem is not that XYZ doesn't pray or do other acts of worship. They pray, fast, and fulfill most of their Islamic obligations. What's wrong with them is what their aiming at. If you analyze them closely, their not really aiming for the Deen, their aiming for the Dunya. Their ultimate goal is for their children to have an excellent education, get married, and live a happy life. In terms of Goals, Islam is not on the top.
This is a cause of many of their problems and their 'difficult' decisions. The children of Family XYZ happen to have an exam on Eid day. Now, like so many people of other religions, they could get take a day off from school saying its a religious holiday. But they don't . Passing that exam is more important than that Eid prayer(which is sunnah). Even for the ones in middle school.
The oldest child of Family XYZ has just finished high school, now needs to start college. She has been an honor roll student all her life, straight A's, many AP classes, but unfortunately she hasn't gotten much scholarships. Now what does she do? Student Loan or not?
Not a difficult decision unless you've got your priorities mixed up. And thats how it is with Family XYZ. Family XYZ can't decide what's more important; obeying Allah or getting a good education. Now, some people might say its not all that simple, there are other factors involved... Yes, I might even here that from my elders as well. But it is.
ISLAM is a universal religion. It is applied in ALL aspects. Allah is everywhere, not just at Jumu'ah or Sunday School.
Family XYZ is an extreme case. Not everyone is like this. But many Muslims have the same problem, more or less. For some worshiping Allah is higher on their list than others but for others its even lower than Family XYZ.