Tuesday, January 25, 2011

living the hard life

Over the past several years, I have seen some of the enormously hurtful effects of the West's "terrorist" witch-hunt. They've taken people from our cities, our communities - people to whom we would've never given a second glance to had not the authorities decided to effectively crucify them in the public eye.

I remember a conversation between my older sister and the wife of a man who was being held on Canada's  security certificate (dictating that Canada can detain and deport foreign nationals if they have "just cause" - which is naturally a very subjective concept). My sister asked her how do you manage to raise your kids as a single-mom, actively advocate on your husband's behalf and live a normal life all at once? And she gave the simplest of answers which, to this day, astonishes me with its heavy meaning and brevity: who ever said that life is supposed to be easy?

To this day I can't fathom how she managed (and still manages) to stay afloat with her family and still be one of most genuinely kind people I have ever met. But the answer to my puzzled thoughts lies in that one statement: "who ever said that life is supposed to be easy?"

I was thinking about this because lately I have been so frustrated with my less-than-fruitful job hunt, and I see others who are in similar situations about jobs, school, family situations, etc. And we whine and moan about how difficult our lives are, and we wonder why God is putting this test on our shoulders. And we walk through life with a feeling of entitlement, as though we somehow deserve good things to materialize for us without strife or struggle.

But no one ever promised us an easy life. And she understood that.

She understood that she has to take what she was given and do the best she can with it, not expecting that things will become easier or better - but instead expecting a reward from the Creator who knows her every moment of struggle and pain, and who knows the amount of effort she put in to still believe and not raise her hands and just say I give up on You, I give up on myself.

That's a kind of strength I can only dream of achieving.

Life is meant to be riddled with tests and at least some physical or emotional discomfort. You will lose things and people that you love. That's simply a testament to what God says about the impermanent nature of our lives. We all have different struggles and pains - and God gives us the trials He knows we can bear and overcome. But still, the path to overcoming trials is not strewn with rose petals; it is engrossed by thorns that will snag your clothes unless you step carefully, mindfully towards the end goal of Relief in the hereafter.

Relief sounds wonderful.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

May Allah (swt) make it easy for you!

Inshallah kheir. I had to find employment during the recession we had a while back. There is light at the end of the tunnel so keep your chin up :-)