Patience



Inshallah in today's session we will learn about Patience and its importance in our lives. It is such a vast topic but we can only cover a little at a time and Inshallah pray that Allah puts patience in all of us.
After reading the stories and we learn of the suffering by our Prophets (pbut), their families, the companions and the Believers, we should wonder at our own state of affairs. Allah tests the Believer to what they can stand and the more He tests them, the more He shows He loves them because He knows that, when all is said and done, they (the Believers) will be patient and will still turn to Allah for His mercy and for eternal peace. Knowing this, how can we think that we are being tested even worse than they were? How often are we tested? How often are we asked to show our love and faith to Allah? Don't we want Jannat? Don't we want Allahís forgiveness and mercy?
Subhanallah, when we show patience in all our daily life activities, in our worship of Allah and during times of distress, Allah promises us Jannat, His forgiveness and mercy and so much more that we cannot even imagine. Do we really want to push these gifts away?
Inshallah, I pray that Allah will help us build on our patience and help us to reap the benefits.
Bismillah hir-rahma nirraheem.
The Quran states: "Be sure We shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods, lives, and the fruits of your toil. But give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere. Those who say, when afflicted with calamity, 'To Allah we belong, and to Him is our return.' They are those on whom descend blessings from their Lord, and mercy. They are the ones who receive guidance." Sura Baqarah (2) v 155-157.   
And also remember, "And We shall try you until We test those among you who strive their utmost and persevere in patience; and We shall try your reported (mettle)." Sura Muhammad (47) v 31
When you are tested with a trial, what is your first response?
  • At work, your children, your money, violence from others, actions by others towards you, your health, death, at early morning when you need to get up for Fajr but itís cold, when you hit your elbow on something...
On no soul does Allah Place a burden greater than it can bear. It gets every good that it earns, and it suffers every ill that it earns." Sura Baqarah (2) v 286
  • "Our Lord! Condemn us not if we forget or fall into error" (Rabbana la tu-akhizna inna sina aw-akhtana)
  • "Our Lord! Lay not on us a burden Like that which You did lay on those before us" (Rabbana wala tah-mil a'layina israan, kama hamaltahu a'lal-lazeena min qablina)
  • "Our Lord! Lay not on us a burden greater than we have strength to bear. Blot out our sins, and grant us forgiveness. Have mercy on us. You are our Protector; Help us against those who stand against faith." (Rabbana wala tuham-milna ma la taqatalana bihi; wa'fu a'nna wagh-firlana war hamna; Anta maulana fanswurna a'lal qaumil kafireen.)
Real patience is at the time of calamity.
  • Make dua, pray and be steadfast in your faith of Allah. (Seek Allah's help with patient perseverance and prayer. It is indeed hard except for those who are humble. Baqarah (2) v 45)
  • Help each other at times of distress and be as good as you can be. "Oh you who believe! Persevere in patience and constancy. Vie in such perseverance, strengthen each other, and be pious, that you may prosper." Al Imran (3) v200
  • (The patient is the one) who says, when afflicted with calamity: 'To Allah We belong, and to Him is our return', Then here are the rewards Allah will give that person. (Inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi rajeeun)" Sura Baqarah (2) v157
Allah tested many great men and woman before us:
  • Yusuf (aws) was tested with the desire of a woman and the evil jealousy of his brothers but with patience, he received a kingdom and his families loyalties.
  • Prophet Ayub (aws) was given wealth and family but was tested by Allah through his wealth (all his livestock were killed by lightning and his farms were destroyed by storms) and his children (who were all killed when his house collapsed on them) and through his health (ulcers over his body) and only his wife Raheemah remained to care for him while all others fled and finally he was forced to leave his home to flee into the woods with his wife; Throughout his calamities, he kept acknowledging that Allah gives and Allah takes and it was Allah who would take care of him. Alhamdulillah, Allah cured him of his illness and gave him more riches than he originally had, more children and more followers than before. This is the reward of the patient.
  • Prophet Yunus (aws) grew impatient with the people for not believing in Allah so he fled, only to be swallowed by a whale; upon realizing his mistake in leaving Allah's command to preach to his people, he asked Allah for forgiveness (la ilaha illa antas subhanaka inni kuntum minazzwalimeen - There is no God save you, Be though glorified! Lo! I have been a wrong-doer); he was expelled from the whale's belly and Allah covered his torn body with the shade of a shrub and eventually the people came looking for him and accepted Islam truly.
  • Prophet Zakariah (aws) who was distressed at not having a child and patiently kept asking Allah for a child(Rabbi lata zarni fardan wa anta khayrul waritheen - My Lord, leave me not childless, though You are the Best of Inheritors), and Allah sent him Yahya (aws) through his very old wife.
Even woman had their tests
  • Um Salama, when her husband was taken away, showed patience and asked Allah for better and so was later rewarded with marriage to our Prophet (pbuh). (Inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi rajeuun. Allahumma jurnee fee museebati wakhlifnee khayrun minha (To Allah we belong and to Him we return. O Allah, reward me in this calamity and give me better than it.))
  • Aisha (ra), when accused of adultery , was steadfast in her knowledge of innocence and sought Allah's help, Allah proclaimed her innocence in the Quran itself!
  • A woman who suffered epileptic fits came to our Prophet (pbuh) to make dua that Allah cure her of this disease and he (pbuh) asked her if she would rather be patient and attain Jannat or he (pbuh) should make a dua for her to Allah. She chose to be patient and asked him (pbuh) to make a dua that she not become uncovered during her fits and he made dua for that. Our Prophet (pbuh) pointed out that this was a woman of Jannat because of her patience. (hadith)
  • Aasiah, Pharoahs wife, who was beaten and was finally killed with a boulder because she refused to bow to her husband who said he was a God. Because of her devotion to Allah and her patience and perseverance in such a situation, she was shown her home in Jannat.
Can we even IMAGINE the rewards Allah might shower on us for having patience and being steadfast in belief in Allah's mercy?
  • Blessings and forgiveness from Allah; We can never even imagine what blessings He can have in store for us, either in this life or saved for us in the afterlife. ("(Not so do ) those who show patience and constancy, and work righteousness; for them is forgiveness (of sins) and a great reward". Sura Hud (11) v 11)
  • Mercy of Allah with the promise of Jannat.
  • Guidance of Allah; Turning to Him at our direst times keeps us from doing what the shaitans try to make us do. ("They are those on whom (Descend) blessings from Allah, and Mercy, and they are the ones that receive guidance." Sura Baqarah (2) v 157)
  • Martyrdom: Aisha (ra) once asked our Prophet (pbuh) about the plague and he (pbuh) said that the plague was a punishment on a "people" but a reward for the believer, for the believer who is present during a plague and stays in that place and is patient and has complete knowledge that Allah will let nothing befall him except for what is written for him, then he will get the reward of a martyr
Allah promises in the Quran, "Verily with every difficulty there is relief. Verily with every difficulty there is relief." Al Inshirah (94) v5-6. So how can we not show patience when it is needed most?
"And whatever misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned; And He pardons us", Sura Ashura (42), v30.
Have we ever asked if the affliction was self based? (drinking too much? Laziness from eating too much? ) Do we bring the calamity upon ourselves? Are we not steadfast in our desire to please Allah? Do we let the worldly things interfere with what we should be doing? Are we selling our afterlife for this world which will only be for a short time?
When we meet Allah on that day, will we be able to face Him or will we be ashamed of ourselves?
Patience comes in three forms
  • Patience during calamity - This is the patience that we all know of and accept. It is the patience we must show when something befalls us as a test from Allah such as life calamities, death, illness, and so on.
  • Patience in our obedience to Allah - This revolves around the patience we must show when performing our worship. Do we show patience in having to wake up for Fajr prayer or do we stay asleep? Do we take our time in performing our prayers or rush through to get to our worldly activities?
  • Patience in obeying the principles set by Allah - This revolves around our showing patience and preventing our evil desires from over taking us and making us commit an act of sin such as backbiting or hurting another Muslim. Do we let our frustrations of worldly matters overtake our imaan and make us do something we shouldn't have?
Most Muslims really only think they must show patience during calamity and death but we must remember that patience must be shown in every action in our daily life.
The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) has said that the ingredients to a happy life is to give thanks during good times and to have patience during hard times. We can all achieve that happy state if we only tried a little.
The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said: "One amongst the inhabitants of Hell, who had lived a life of ease and pleasure in the world, would be made to dip in the Hell Fire only once on the Day of Resurrection. Then he would be asked: 'O son of Adam, Did you find any comfort. Did you get any blessing?' He would say: 'By Allah, no, my Lord!' Then a person, from the inhabitants of Paradise, who had led the most miserable life (in the world), would be made to dip once in Paradise and it would be said to him: 'O son of Adam, did you face any hardship or experience any distress?' he would say: 'By Allah! No never have I experienced any hardship or distresses." (Saheeh Muslim, No. 6738)
The sign of a true Muslim is one who learns not to complain about their life for fear that Allah will be angered, knowing there are so many others who may be suffering worse than they are.
And may Allah shower His blessings on Muhammad (pbuh) his family and the companions and May Allah bless us with His Mercy and help us to get closer and closer to Him and increase us in rewards. Ameen.
References:
The Story of Prophet Yusuf (aws) from Sura Yusuf (12)
  • Yusuf had many brothers, of whom his father, Prophet Yaqub (aws), loved him and his youngest brother (Benyamin). The brothers knew of their father's love for these two siblings and were constantly jealous
  • Oneday, Yusuf (aws) saw in a dream 11 planets, the sun and the moon prostrating to him and he told this to his father. His father warned him not to tell his brothers in fear that they would do something out of their jealousy of him. So he kept silent.
  • A time later, the brothers plotted to remove Yusuf (aws) from their home so that they could get their father's love only for themselves. So they asked their father to take him to the forest and with much sadness, the father gave permission.
  • The brothers all plotted and eventually threw Yusuf (aws) into a well. Allah, out of mercy for Yusuf (aws) gave Yusuf (aws) patience and told him that he would tell his brothers of this deed later, and so Yusuf was calm when he was thrown into the well. The brothers went back to tell their father that Yusuf was eaten by a wolf and showed him Yusuf's (aws) shirt smeared with blood of an animal. Their father did not believe them and grieved the loss of his son.
  • In the meantime, a caravan found Yusuf (aws) in the well and took him with them and then sold him to an Egyptian king.
  • As time wore on, and Yusuf (aws) came into his prime, the king's wife (Zulaikah) was smitten with him and ordered him to have relations with her but he refused. When she was adamant, he turned to run for the door and she ran after him and tore his shirt from behind. The man of the house was at the door when this happened and the wife tried to make it seem that Yusuf (aws) was the one who was committing the evil act. But another man who was nearby told them to see if the shirt was ripped from the back or front and of course the shirt was ripped from the back. The man told his wife to repent and did not punish Yusuf as his wife had wanted.
  • Soon the whole household started making snickering comments about the queen and her weakness and so she devised that all the ladies see Yusuf (aws) for themselves. So she prepared a meal and gave each a knife to cut their fruits with at the end of the meal. When they were in the process of cutting their fruits, she had Yusuf (aws) come in and all the ladies ended up cutting their hands due to their awe of Yusuf (aws).
  • When this happened, Yusuf (aws) prayed to Allah to save him from the guile of these women who were commanding him to do sin and Allah answered his prayers.
  • The men of the palace decided it was better to put Yusuf (aws) away in prison or have the kingdom mock the king and queen.
  • While Yusuf (aws) was going to prison, two others were put there. One said he saw a dream that he was pressing wine and the other saw that he was carrying a loaf of bread on his head and birds were eating away at it. They asked Yusuf (aws) to interpret their dreams. As for the one serving wine, he was told that he'd be serving wine to his master to drink and as for the other, he would be crucified and birds will eat of his head.
  • Yusuf (aws) told the man who would live, to remember him and to tell his future master about Yusuf's (aws) predicament but shaitan made the man forget when he was released and Yusuf (aws) was left to stay in prison for several years.
  • Many years later, the king of Egypt saw a dream where there were seven fat cows that were being eaten by seven skinny cows and seven green ears of corn with seven dry ears of corn. He asked the people at court to interpret his dream. The man who had come out of prison remembered Yusuf at that moment and went to him for the interpretation of the dream.
  • Yusuf (aws) interpreted the dream as seven years of fruitful harvest of which they should save some. That would be followed by seven years of drought and they would use what they had stored during that time. That would be followed by one year of plentitude and they would press wine and oil (ie from the corn).
  • The king upon hearing this, called for Yusuf (aws) to join him. Yusuf (aws) reminded the king of the ladies (in particular his own wife) who had played their treachery against him and when the king went to ask the ladies, they did not deny it but admitted to their treachery. And Yusuf (aws) did this only so that his name be cleared before he joined the king in any way.
  • Yusuf (aws) asked to be custodian of the storehouses and so that was where he was assigned for his honesty and trustworthiness.
  • After some time, Yusuf's brothers came for supplies to the king, not knowing that they were actually dealing with Yusuf (aws) himself. Yusuf gave them the supplies and told them to bring their youngest brother (Benyamin, from his own mother as well) to him or they would not get supplies again in the future. In addition, Yusuf (aws) had his men, without the brothers knowing it, put back the merchandise used for the trade as well as the supplies back into their saddlebags so they would, for sure, come again.
  • So the brothers went back and told their father about the order. Their father again was hesitant but when the brothers saw the supplies and the merchandise used to get the supplies, they knew they had to go back. Their father made them swear on Allah to bring back the younger brother and so they swore.
  • When they all got to Yusuf, he took his younger brother aside and told him that he was actually Yusuf (aws). Then Yusuf (aws) had a gold cup hidden in the younger brother's bag and announced to the brothers that an item from the king had been stolen and one of them was a thief. The brothers declared that they did not do it and whoever stole it should pay with his own person. So Yusuf (aws) went in search of the cup and found it, of course, in the younger brother's bag and so in this way, the younger brother had to stay behind. The brothers had to leave him and at the same time mentioned how their other brother (Yusuf) was also a thief, which was a lie upon a lie.
  • The brothers went back to their father and told him the sad news. Upon hearing this, the father was truly upset and relied on patience to see his sons again. But as a result of his misery and from hiding it, he lost his eyesight. The brothers complained of their father's emotions and he reminded them that his misery will only be seen by Allah as Allah is the only One who would hear him. And he told his sons to go check on their youngest son again. So they left for the king's place again.
  • When they returned, Yusuf (aws) could no longer hold back the truth, and reminded his brothers of what mischief they played on him and their youngest brother. They realized then that it was the brother who they had thrown into the well. At this they truly felt sorry for their actions and Yusuf (aws) reminded them of Allah's mercy to those who are true repenters and who sincerely do taubah. He sent his brothers to go get their parents so they could all live in the palace and he sent one of his shirts so that his father would recognize him.
  • So when they returned with his shirt, their father was very happy and his eyesight came back to him. They all got to the palace and as his parents got to standing next to Yusuf (aws), all his brothers bowed to him and that was the culmination of Yusuf's (aws) dream of long ago.
  • Tawaffani muslimaan wa alhiq-ni bis-swaliheen. (Make me to die Muslim and join me to the Righteous).
Bukhari: Volume 8, Book 77, Number 616: Narrated 'Aisha: I asked Allah's Apostle about the plague. He said, "That was a means of torture which Allah used to send upon whom-so-ever He wished, but He made it a source of mercy for the believers, for anyone who is residing in a town in which this disease is present, and remains there and does not leave that town, but has patience and hopes for Allah's reward, and knows that nothing will befall him except what Allah has written for him, then he will get such reward as that of a martyr."
Bukhari: Volume 2, Book 23, Number 389: Narrated Anas: The Prophet said, "The real patience is at the first stroke of a calamity."
 
http://makkah.wordpress.com/2007/12/24/patience-sabr-in-islam-a-great-virtue-to-live-by/
http://www.al-huda.com/TPOI_2.htm