By Wael Abdelgawad | IslamicSunrays.com
Allah guides those who struggle. “And those who strive in Our cause, We will surely guide them to Our paths.” – Al-Ankaboot, 29:69. Struggle may seem like something to be avoided, but the alternative is to walk in dim light, seeing nothing clearly. If our lives consist of sitting on the sofa watching TV, doing jobs without passion, shrugging our shoulders at the suffering of others, and accepting the unreality that is pushed at us by advertising and the media, then we are living in shadow, even when the sun shines.
Yes, we all have bills to pay, and sometimes we work jobs that we are not passionate about, in order to support our families. I have a website about money transfer services, and another about paying bills online. They are boring, but I spend time on them because they earn money. In my free time I struggle to do work that is important to me – this website being a notable example. Even a short article might take me two or three days to write, because of the limited time I have to work on it. Longer articles can take weeks. And yet people sometimes tell me that my writing has changed their lives.
We can all find a little time every day to pursue what we love, and to make a difference in people’s lives, even in a small way. Beyond that, we must strive to represent truth in everything we do: in our family lives, our work, our entertainment – everything.
Imam Jamil Al-Amin wrote in 2006:
“In the heart there is an emptiness and a need which nothing can satisfy except for the remembrance of Allah (swt). The only proof of faith is in struggle, struggling in word and deed, in body and soul. The lack of faith will crush you far more than defeat ever could. ‘And what will explain to you the path that is steep?’ (90:12). Conscious struggle is the path that is steep. Struggle where bitter hardship and misfortune and difficulty becomes sweet tasting to the soul.”
There is no road to success except through the struggle for truth and righteousness. This is actually good news, because if you’re a seeker, if you’ve got a nose for truth, if you care about justice, then you’re already struggling, walking a hard road. It’s inevitable. Those who pursue truth and speak it out loud are seen as strangers and subversives. You might wonder sometimes if it’s worth it, or if you’re moving in the right direction.
Don’t worry. The fact that you’re struggling means that Allah is guiding you, and you’re on the right road.