The ways in which Allah(swt) tests me are strange indeed.
I’m now expected to go off on a tragic account of how terrible those tests are… but no, I shall not. That’s because, if there’s anything that these tests have really taught me, it’s that they’re not, by any means, without purpose.
Every bump in the road, every mountain of hope that’s turned to dust within seconds, has molded me into a stronger, wiser human being. They say it’s like purifying gold – only when the nuggets melt in the tough conditions of fire, do they let go of their impurities and become truly priceless in their worth. It was difficult but it was necessary to bring out the best from within, grow and achieve strengths you couldn’t imagine having before.
But how can I be talking of strength when the only feelings that overwhelm a person, on being severely tested, are of pain and intense weakness? To be hurt, crushed, rejected, repulsed, refused, denied… how does that have anything to do with strength? But it does, and that’s what time shows you… shows me… has showed me. Every time I faced a situation where I felt I was breaking apart deep within, I was in fact learning to face pain and fight it. In the moments and days that followed the initial blow, courage replaced fear and reason, born of faith, fortified the broken spirit. Standing up again needed learning how to stand, all over again, and all that revision did pay off. I learned how to stand up again faster, with more confidence.
It may sound odd that I blog about test and trials a lot but that is because my life is going through all sorts of changes these days. At my age, so much is changing on the personal level, on the academic level and in so many other less-well-defined ways that deep thought and reflection is almost a must. And I write about it, whatever I can, to have some thoughts clearly laid out… and also so that perhaps someone reading this blog may derive benefit for their own selves too, Insha’Allah.
I wish it were easy… that life was clear and defined. That there were no tests at all and we lived a life of total ease and bliss. But indeed, our tests also remind us that this life is only a mirage and the next life is the one really worth striving for. It takes a clever, yet simple person to see that these very tests we see as wrecking our lives, if understood right and responded to positively, may ultimately bring us closer the real life of eternal joy… and isn’t that what we have always wanted anyway?
And I’ll wrap this short post with an amazing Hadith I read today – it’s a Qudsi Hadith I’d never heard of before. Here it is…
Allah(swt) said: ‘Verily, from amongst My slaves is he whose faith cannot be rectified except by being inflicted with poverty, and were I to enrich him, it would surely corrupt him.
Verily, from amongst My slaves is he whose faith cannot be rectified except by wealth and affluence, and were I to deprive him, it would surely corrupt him.
Verily, from amongst My slaves is he whose faith cannot be rectified except by good health, and were I to make him sick, it would surely corrupt him.
Verily, from amongst My slaves is he whose faith cannot be rectified except by disease and illness, and were I to make him healthy, it would surely corrupt him.
Verily, from amongst My slaves is he who seeks worship by a certain act but I prevent that from him so that self-amazement does not enter his heart.
Certainly, I run the affairs of My slaves by My Knowledge of what is in their hearts. Certainly, I am the All-Knower, All-Aware.‘” [Tabarani]