Islamic Teachings in Facing Hardships and Difficulties
Almighty Allah has promised each and every one of us that we will face difficulties and hardship in life, whether it be with the loss of a loved one, poverty or fear of something:
“And certainly, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, loss of wealth, lives and fruits, but give glad tidings to As-Sâbirin (the patient ones, etc.)” Surah Baqarah 2:155
As Allah said in the above verse, glad tidings are for the ones that are patient with the trials that he tests us with.
Patience is a means to Allah and His love, His help, His victory, His fortification, His reward, and His company.
Patience is a Command from Allah.
Allah said: “And seek help in patience and As-Salah and truly it is extremely heavy and hard except for humbly submissive [to Allah]” Surah Al-Baqarah 2:45.
Patience is the way to gaining the love of Allah. Allah said: ”And Allah loves As-Sabirun (the patient ones)” Surah Aal Imran 3:146.
And the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “How wonderful is the case of the believer; there is good in everything and this is not the case with anyone except a believer. If good attends him, he expresses gratitude to Allah and that is good for him; and if adversity befalls him he endures it patiently and that is better for him.”[Narrated by Abu Yahya Suhaib ibn Sinan and recorded in Sahih Muslim.]
The Prophet (ﷺ) said: “The real patience is at the first stroke of a calamity.” [Narrated by Anas and recorded in Sahih Al Bukhari vol 2 # 389.]
This is the time of the true test, when the initial reaction is either patience or impatience, and this is the time when patience is needed most.
Allah said in the Qur’an: “No calamity occurs, but by the permission of Allah, and whosoever believes in Allah, He guides his heart. And Allah is the All-Knower of everything.” Sura at-Taghabun 64:11
Ibn Kathir said about this Verse: Whoever suffered an affliction and he knew that it occurred by Allah’s Judgement and Decree, and he patiently abides, awaiting Allah’s reward, then Allah guides his heart, and will compensate him for his loss in this life by granting guidance to his heart and certainty in faith. Allah will replace whatever he lost for Him with the same or what is better.
Ali ibn Abi Talhah reported from Ibn Abbas: ‘… and whosoever believes in Allah, He guides his heart.’ Allah will guide his heart to certainty. Therefore, he will know that what reached him would not have missed him and what missed him would not have reached him.” [Al Mubarakpuri, Sheikh Saifur-Rahman, tafsir ibn Kathir (Abridged) vol 10 (Riyadh, Darussalam, 2000), pp 24-25]
Sometimes when we’re experiencing hardships in our lives we fail to see Allah’s wisdom and mercy in the hardships. We become consumed with the hardship itself. However difficult the hardships may be, Allah always helps the believers and intends good for them. Indeed, Allah has His plans.
Allah, The Most Wise says, “For indeed, with hardship [will be] ease. Indeed, with hardship [will be] ease.” [Surah ash-Sharh 94: 5-6]