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Trials and sabr: Assalamu Alaikum... Alhamdulillah I came across this website for I have been looking for someone qualified to answer my question. Recently about two years ago I applied for a program its a nursing program at this school I wasn't really sure about. So I prayed Istkhara and made dua to Allah SWT. So I got accepted into the program but after a year and half of the program this instructor one day I was missing a lot of prayers may Allah forgive me. And I guess I told her that I needed to pray my prayer. Since that day she started giving me a hard time and she failed me. The program coordinator of the school wouldn't help me she actually kept giving me a really hard time. She wanted to kick me out of the school I tried to get people to help me but no one would help. So I just withdrew and I applied for a couple of schools in different cities but I am on a waitinglist. I made constant dua and prayed Istikhara numerous times. I am content with what Allah gives me but it's really stressing me out because my family is getting impatient with me and I have so many loans to pay off. I just have so much going on and I really just need a piece of advice because I am confused and I don't know if it's khair for me to continue on with this career. Because so far it's been 2 years has past and I have been waiting and I feel like I am at a roadblock. I just wanted to know what I can do to increase in my patience especially with pressures from the outside world.

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 29 Surah Ankabut verse 62:

62      Allah enlarges the sustenance (which He gives) to whichever of His servants He pleases; and He (similarly) grants by (strict) measure (as He pleases): for Allah has full knowledge of all things.

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 42 Surah Shura verse 12:

12      To Him belong the keys of the heavens and the earth: He enlarges and restricts the sustenance to whom He Wills: for He knows full well all things.

Dear and beloved brother in Islam, the amount of sustenance (rizk) of each and every animate being depends entirely and solely upon the Will and Decree of the Lord Most Gracious, Most Bounteous. 

The Lord Most High, Most Supreme tests some amongst His slaves by providing with abundant sustenance…to see whether or not they are grateful and thankful to their Lord for His innumerable favors.  Similarly, the Lord Most Gracious restricts the sustenance of some of amongst His creation as a test to see whether or not they are patient with the Decree of their Lord.  These alternate conditions in life whereby one touches dust and it becomes gold or one touches gold and it becomes dust is no more than a test from their Lord….only to determine who amongst man is grateful to their Lord and who is impatient and ungrateful.

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 21 Surah Anbiyaa verse 35:

35      Every soul shall have a taste of death: and We test you by evil and by good by way of trial: to Us must ye return!

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 2 Surah Baqarah verses 155-157:

155    Be sure We shall test you with something of fear, and hunger, some loss in goods, or lives, or the fruits (of your toil); but give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere.

156    Who when afflicted with calamity say: "To Allah we belong and to Him is our return."

157    They are those on whom (descend) blessings from Allah and Mercy, and they are the ones that receive guidance.

Thus my beloved brother in Islam, when afflicted with a trial, never ever despair of your Mercy and Grace of your Lord….but rather remain patient and grateful and keep your hope and trust in none save your Lord Most Gracious, Most Bounteous.  The good and evil condition one experiences in life are no more than a trial and a test bestowed upon man by their Lord to see and determine who amongst His slaves are grateful and who amongst them are ungrateful.

Your Question: Because so far it's been 2 years has past and I have been waiting and I feel like I am at a roadblock. I just wanted to know what I can do to increase in my patience especially with pressures from the outside world.

Allah says in Holy Quran Chapter 33 Surah Ahzab verse 21: There is indeed the best example for you to follow, in the Messenger of Allah, for every such person looks forward to Allah and the Last Day, and remembers Allah much.

The Prophet (saws) of Allah went through many trials and tribulations at the hands of the disbelievers, and he always turned to Allah for help in every act of his life.   He is our example and we have to learn to copy his example in every act of ours.

The Prophet (saws) said in an authentic narration: “The best of ‘dhikr’ is the following: Laa Ilaha illallaho,  wahdahu, laa shareeka lahu,  lahul mulk, wala hul hamd,  wa howa alaa kulle shayin kadeer.” (Meaning, there is no god worthy of worship, except Allah Alone.  He is One.  He does not have any partners or associates.   To Him belongs the sovereignity and Kingdom.   All Praises are only for Him Alone.   He Alone has Power over everything.)

I will try to explain the above tasbeeh in some detail:

1.    Laa ilaaha illah.

We testify that there no god, no prophet, no angel, no imam, no leader, nobody:  worthy of worship, except Allah Alone.  He is our Creator, and the Creator of everything that exists.  Thus he alone deserves our worship and He alone deserves all our rites of worship.   Nobody is worthy of worship and invocation except Allah Alone.

2.    Wahdahu:

We testify that Allah is One.  He is Unique. There is nothing in the universe like unto Him.  He alone is the Creator, Sustainer and Provider of everything that exists.

3.    Laa shareeka lahu:

Allah has absolutely no partners in His Godhead.  He Alone creates everything, and He Alone controls all the aspects of Creation.   Nobody can even create a fly on this earth, and He Alone Creates everything.   All things are accountable to Him Alone, and He is accountable to no one.   He has absolutely no associates and has not given any of His Powers to anybody.

4.    Lahul Mulk:

He is Sovereign King and Master of the Universe.   Everything is born, moves and works by His Command Alone.   Everything is subdued in His Presence.   He Alone is the owner of everything that exists.   He is King of all the kings, He is Emperor of all the emperors, and He is Master of all the masters!!  To Him Alone belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth and whatever is between it.   We are His slaves and He Alone is our Owner and Master.  That is our Lord.

5.    Wala hul hamd:

All the praises belong to Allah Alone.   He creates everything.  He provides for everyone.  Thus He Alone deserves all the thanks and praises for everything.   When He decides to give, nobody can withhold, and when He decides to take, no combination of people can give it to us.   Everything in creation praises his Greatness and Majesty, and nobody deserves any praise and thanks, except Allah Alone.

6.    Wa howa alaa kulle shayin kadeer:

All the Power is vested in Allah Alone.   He is undoubtedly the Most Powerful.   Nobody dare talk or move in His Presence, without His Permission.   He controls every aspect of the universe Alone.  He alone has the power to bestow good, He Alone has the power to decree a trial, and He Alone has the Power to create or destroy.   Nobody, and no combination of people, have any power whatsoever in this world, compared to the Power of Allah Subhanah.  That is Allah, our Lord and the Lord of all creation!

The other tasbeehs that our beloved Prophet (saws) did regularly and exhorted the believers to do is:

Subhanah Allah: Allah o Akbar: Alhamdo lillah.

1.    Subhan Allah:

It means Glory be to Allah Alone, Who created everything in existence.   He is free from any and all deficiencies.  He is the All Mighty, All Wise, All Knowing, and All Superior.  Nothing, absolutely nothing, is comparable to Him in any way.  His names are the best and His attributes are the best.   He is our Lord and the Lord of everything that exists.

2.    Allah o Akbar:

Allah is the Greatest.  No one has any power, and all the Power is vested in Him Alone.  He Alone has the Power to give and take anything He wants.   He is accountable to no one, and everything in creation is accountable to Him.  He does whatever He wants, and nobody has any say or opinion in whatever He does.   He is the All Mighty, All Powerful.

3.    Al hamdo lillah:

All ‘shukr’ and praises and thanks belong to Him Alone.  He Alone creates everything that exists, and He Alone provides for their existance.   Thus He Alone deserves to be thanked and praised.

Thus the ‘tasbeehs’ of Allah Alone deserves to be done.   Everything in creation sings His Praises and He Alone deserves to be praised.   Nobody has any share in the creation of the heavens and earth and everything that exists in between. 

The thing to remember here is that there is no particular number of times any tasbeeh has to be done.   Islam is not a religion or deen of ‘jantar-mantar’, whereby one just repeats something a million times, without knowing what it means.   When one understands and recognizes his Lord and Creator, the ‘tasbeeh’ or praise overflows from the heart and the continuation of that spirit is that one utters the Praises of Allah with his mouth.   But if someone does ‘tasbeeh’ verbally without feeling and understanding the actual meanings of the words, without any recognition of His Greatness and His Powers, it cannot bring him any contentment and peace.  

It is proven from the authentic narrations of the Prophet (saws) that he (saws) remembered Allah in everything he did.  When he woke up, he praised Allah.  When he ate or drank something, he praised Allah.  When he went out of the house, he praised Allah.  When he sat on his horse, he praised Allah.  When he met someone, he praised Allah.   When he received something, he praised Allah.   When he came back home, he praised Allah.  When he went to sleep, he praised Allah.   All his life, in whatever he did, he always remembered Allah and His favors.   As believers, we must do the same and remember Allah in everything we do, if indeed we want contentment of the heart.

Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 3 surah Ale Imran verse 190-194: In the creation of the heavens and the earth, and in the alternation of the night and day, there are many signs for the people who understand.   Who standing, and sitting, and lying down remembers Allah, and reflects upon the wonders of the structure of the earth and the heavens.   Then they cry out spontaneously, “Our Lord, You have not created all this in vain, for you are free from doing such a thing.   So save us from the torment of Hell-Fire.   For, O Lord, surely You will have abased him,  whom You will cast into the fire of Hell.   Then such workers of iniquity shall have no helper at all.   O Lord, we hear a caller, who invited us to the Faith, sayingBelieve in your Lord”, and we accepted his invitation.  So, our Lord, forgives us our sins and remits our evil deeds, and let our end be with the righteous people.   Lord, fulfil the promises You have made to us through Your Messengers, and do not put us to shame on the Day of Resurrection, for You never go against Your Promises.”

Unfortunately, today our state is that we think we must be successful in this world, and exert our utmost in collecting wealth and honor in this world.   Our whole life revolves around attaining material success in this world.  But Allah wants us to live this life in His remembrance and worship, and submit our will to His, so that we can be successful in the hereafter.    He and His Messenger (saws) are inviting us to the life of the hereafter, where there will be no trials, no sorrow, no fear and no grief.   Only eternal happiness and contentment, and the life of living in bliss and peace.  There, one will get from His Lord, whatever one would desire!!

So if today one is worried about his finances, or health, or sickness, or family, or the death of a loved one…. We must remember that these are just trials of this life and can only last for a limited time, and all this will stop when one stops breathing!   This is in no way eternal … but the life of the hereafter is eternal and unto eternity!!!   The real worry of the believer should not be the tribulations of this world, but rather the eternal life of the hereafter, and what has he prepared for that life.   All the wealth and children and power of this life will be left behind when one dies, and nothing but his good deeds will follow him as sustenance for the hereafter.   There Allah will not ask you how much wealth and children you accumulated, but rather what good deeds did you do in the life gone by.   We must also remember that all good and bad comes from Allah Alone as a test in this world.   We have to be thankful when everything is going right, and patient when put in a trial by Allah.   Nobody has the power to give or take anything from us, except that Allah wills it. 

Thus if you are facing some trials in your life, it is best to be patient and remember Allah and supplicate him to make these trials easy for you.

The Prophet (saws) said in an authentic narration: “On the Day of Judgment, Allah will take a person who lived his whole worldly life in trials and tribulations of poverty, ill-health, no children, no authority and misery.   Then the All Merciful will just dip this person into one of the rivers of Paradise for a split second, and then ask him: “Did you ever face any trials or tribulations or misery in your life gone by?”   The person will reply: “I swear by you O Allah, I do not even know what is misery or tribulation.”    Then Allah will take a person who lived a great life in this world, with abundance of wealth, healthchildrenhonor and authority, and dip him for a split second in Hell-Fire.  Then the All Mighty will ask him: “Did you ever enjoy and have peace in the life gone by?” This person will reply: “I swear by You, O Allah, I do not even know what peace and enjoyment mean!”” 

Man has tried everything to reach the state of contentment in this world by his experience.   He has collected wealth, childrenhonorauthority, etc.   But for some reason this ‘contentment’ is always beyond his reach.   Even the one, who seemingly has everything in this world, is always complaining and is short of ‘contentment’.   Allah gives a one-line recipe for the believers to attain this state of ‘contentment’ in this life, in the Holy Quran.    It has nothing to do with wealth, health, childrenhonor or authority….It has to do with the remembrance of Allah.

Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 13 Surah Raad verse 28-29: The people who have accepted (the Message), their hearts find comfort in the remembrance of Allah Note it well!, that is Allah’s remembrance Alone that brings contentment to the hearts!  Blessed are those who have accepted the Message and done righteous deeds.   They will have a good end. 

Thus my dear brother, whatever trials and tribulations you are facing at this time; please try to remember Allah as much as you can.   However huge and insurmountable they may seem to you now, please remember that they are only a trial, and Allah is testing you.   Be patient and remember sitting, standing and lying down.   Allah will reward you for your patience.   And remember that all these trials put together, fade far away in comparison to the life of the hereafter.   What should really worry a believer is what he has prepared for the life of the ‘aakherah’.  

May Allah make our trials easy for us, and guide us to remember Him at all times.   May Allah grant us patience when in trial and make us thankful for the favors He has bestowed upon us.   May Allah guide you and us all to understand the guidance of the Holy Quran.   May Allah have mercy on all mankind and guide whoever wants to be guided to the Straight Path.  Ameen.

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