by Shahade Muslim
Knowledge: to be successful you must seek it, believe in it, act on it, and spread it!
All praise to Allah, we seek His aid and His assistance and ask His forgiveness and we seek refuge in Allah from the evil of our souls and from the evil of our actions. Whomever Allah guides, no one will be able to mislead him. Whomever he leads astray, no one can guide him. Ameen.
Trials Are Inevitable
Through the glorious Qur’an, Allah (swt) had warned us in many places about the certainty of the forthcoming trials:
Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: “We believe,” and will not be tested? [Quran, 29:2]
This life is nothing but a test for the hereafter. As we all aware, we need to have passed many exams before we can get accepted into a university.
Similarly, in order to enter an abode of eternal joy and happiness— Paradise, there’s no doubt that we will need to have passed many exams as well. The question is not whether we know or not but the real question is whether we really believe and act upon what we know!
The Almighty says, We will test you with a certain amount of fear and hunger and loss of wealth and life and fruits. [Quran, 2: 155] This means that whether we’re wealthy or poor, young or old, male or female, we will face trials in order to be tested.
Therefore, don’t be surprised if at any point of your life you find yourself in a state of fear, hunger, loss of wealth, or all at once; you’ve already been warned that these are the questions that will definitely come up in the examination!
Why Are We Being Tested?
Merely claiming that we believe in Allah (swt) is not enough. Our claim only takes on value once we evidence it through our actions. If a student claims that he or she is clever and hoping to go to a top university, it’s necessary for hi or her not only to take many exams but also to pass them with excellent results in order to be able to enter a top university.
Similarly, if we claim that we are good Muslims and yearning to enter Al-Jannah, we must demonstrate this in our actions by striving to pass the tests of our creator to the best of our abilities. Every claim needs to be justified with solid evidences and proofs, and this may involve bearing hardships. Remember, true success only comes after real hard work.
Or think you that you will enter Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you? [Quran, 2:214]
Tests are also a way of purifying us. The Prophet (saws) said, No fatigue, nor disease, nor sorrow, nor sadness, nor hurt, nor distress befalls a Muslim, even if it were the prick he receives from a thorn, but that Allah expiates some of his sins for that. [Bukhari]
Is it Worth Bearing the Hardship?
Allah (swt) has told us in numerous places in the Quran about the reality of His rewards for those who believe and do righteous deeds. We will be expected to work towards what we want to achieve. It is impossible to attain true success without actually carrying out the means for it.
The real success here refers to the eternal joy of the hereafter. So, if you want success, work for it and feel secure of Allah’s rewards! If the regards the reward as great, then it is indeed great.
Allah has promised those who believe and do deeds of righteousness, that for them there is forgiveness and a great reward. [Quran, 5: 9]
The Messenger of Allah (saws) said: Allah said: “I have prepared for My righteous servants what no eye has seen and no ear has heard, nor has it occurred to the human heart.” [Bukhari]
Severe trials indicate greater success just as harder questions bring a higher mark. So expect to bear greater hardship in order to attain greater success, and remember what will be said to the successful on the day of Judgement:
Indeed, this is for you a reward, and your effort has been appreciated. [Quran, 76:22]
Even a step taken for the sake of Allah is rewarded and it never becomes wasted. Therefore, the more steps you take the better.
How Can I Succeed in These Trials?
In spite of the endless rewards that come after severe trials, it is unacceptable to ask Allah for such trials. It is best to make dua to Allah (swt) as to avoid such severe trials in the first place. However, once Allah has decided to test you with such tribulations, it is also unacceptable to be ungrateful and discontent.
These are the five tips to be followed when afflicted with any difficulty:
- Have patience. One should constantly seek help from Allah (swt) with patience, knowing that nothing can happen without the His will.O you who believe! Seek help in patience and As-Salat (the prayer). Truly! Allah is with As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.). [Quran, 2:153]
- Keep hold of your Eman. Make sure that you stay firm and that your faith doesn’t waiver during trials. Treat every difficult situation as a way of earning rewards. Thank Allah (swt) for giving you the best blessing, Eman, even if all the others are taken from you. There is no greater treasure than that. Even if you’re dying of hunger but you have Eman in your heart, have you not achieved the ever-lasting life of the hereafter?
- Increase your good deeds. Rush to do good deeds when the fitnah comes. Because the prophet (saw) said: An act of worship during the time of fitnah (trials) is like an act of emigration to me in reward. [Saheeh Bukhari]
- Respond properly. The way you respond to trials may become the deciding factor of your final destiny, Paradise or Hell!
- Pass one trial. If you strive and survive in one difficulty, the next one will be easier to bear and vice versa. Everything starts from zero, but unless you put the effort to go a level higher, you’ll stay at zero! And bear in mind that this zero can be your ticket to Jahannam.
Oh Allah, enlighten our Eman, grant us from Yourself mercy. and prepare for us from our affair right guidance, ameen.