Prolonged Suffering? Help is Near!
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
For those Muslims going through a period of prolonged suffering in the world, I’d like to draw their attention to an āyah of the Qur’ān.
In it Allāh addresses the believers, by firstly pointing out that their efforts in this worldly life are towards the everlasting bounties of Jannah. Then, the fact that the reward of Jannah is so great, calls for effort, difficulty and struggle to be inevitable in its acquisition. This is all a test from Allāh, to condition them into being worthy of the reward. However, to make it easier to overcome the difficulties psychologically, Allāh reminds them that the people before them also had to endure difficulties; people who were embodiments of patience and forbearance – the Prophets and Messengers of Allāh. They were so severely tested - despite their worthiness - that they began to question when the Help of Allāh would come. Finally, to cap it off, Allāh is quick to console His slaves by reminding them that His help is indeed near:
أَمْ حَسِبْتُمْ أَنْ تَدْخُلُوا الْجَنَّةَ وَلَمَّا يَأْتِكُمْ مَثَلُ الَّذِينَ خَلَوْا مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ مَسَّتْهُمُ الْبَأْسَاءُ وَالضَّرَّاءُ وَزُلْزِلُوا حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللَّهِ أَلَا إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ (٢: ٢١٤)
‘Do you think that you will enter Paradise while you have not yet been visited by (difficult) circumstances like those that were faced by the people who passed away before you? They were afflicted by hardship and suffering, and were so shaken down that the prophet, and those who believed with him, started saying, ‘When [will] the help of Allah [come]?’ Behold! The Help of Allah is near!’ (2:214)