“Be patient.” We have all heard this phrase innumerable times in life. Whatever the situation life puts one in, a Muslim is required to remain steadfastly patient. The questions that arise here are: what exactly is patience in the light of Islam? What are the situations that call for it? And, how will it benefit us? Let us define it for you, as described by Ibn Al Qayyim, in the simplest words.
1. Obeying Allah and worshipping Him
There are times when we are having a wonderful time with family or friends and we hear the call for prayer. It takes all of our willpower to leave the fun gathering and get up to pray. It takes courage for a woman to hide her beauty with hijab while the rest of the women adorn themselves. There are countless such examples which test our dedication to Allah. These are the tests to judge whether we are patient enough to adhere to His orders despite our hearts willing for something else. Allah encourages such behavior and assures that our Judgment Day will be a happy one.
“They are those who are patient, seeking the countenance of their Lord, and establish prayer and spend from what We have provided for them, secretly and publicly, and repel evil with good, for those will have the good end.” (Al Qur’an 13:22)
2. Keeping oneself from sins
Shaitan makes sins look tempting to us. Earning from haram sources is easier than halal ones; indulging in forbidden activities seems charming; flaunting her beauty tends to bring a woman better suitors. But is that really so? Allah knows and He plans better than anyone else. If He commands us to avoid something, it has hidden benefits for us. It takes patience and faith to understand His wisdom.
Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) said:
“Verily, you will never leave anything for the sake of Allah Almighty but that Allah will replace it with something better.” (Musnad Ahmad)
3. Accepting fate and hardships without cursing life or other things and people around
Life is a test and everyone has to go through some very tough times in life. No one has a smooth, problem-free life. But how we react to such situations depends entirely upon us. We can either badmouth people around us and the life itself, or we can endure it patiently with grace and the belief that good times will come. Allah loves those remain calm and patient in troubled times.
Allah’s Apostle (P.B.U.H) said:
“Wondrous is the affair of the believer for there is good for him in every matter and this is not the case with anyone except the believer. If he is happy, then he thanks Allah and thus there is good for him, and if he is harmed, then he shows patience and thus there is good for him.” (Sahih Muslim)
Allah Subhanawa Ta’ala promises immense rewards for His patient believers in this world and hereafter. He also assures them of his support.
“And be patient. Surely, Allah is with those who are patient.” (Al Qur’an 8:46)