Assalaamu alaikum warahmatullaahi wabarakaatuh

(May Allah’s peace, mercy and blessings be upon you)

Tears of Realization

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“Do men think that they will be left alone on sayings, ‘We believe’, and that they will not be tested? We did test those before them, and Allah will certainly know those who are true from those who are false.” (29:2-3)

It all started during the summer of 2003, after my second year of high school. I was playing basketball with a bunch of family friends when fate twisted me in an undesirable way. I fell to the ground in extreme pain, crying, knowing that I had injured my leg severely. Weakness took over my whole body and I’d lost all my strength.

My friends and my sister ran over to my parents worriedly and before I knew it I was sitting in the waiting area of the emergency room. By that time, my knee was swollen and my mother was continually helping me keep it iced. I was taken in after several moments to have some x-rays and a ct-scan done on my leg.

All sorts of frightening thoughts traveled through my mind. The thought of how severe my injury might have been made me want to cry some more. I wondered if I would ever be able to do the things that I do such as walking, playing basketball, and just hanging out with my friends. The thought that things just weren’t going to be the same plagued my mind. Yes, it’s true that my mother was a big comfort for me but I knew that what happened was irreversible so I had a hard time accepting the frightening truth.

“Pain caused by illness just as any other sensation of pain is for every believer an opportunity to expiate his sins, that fall from man just as leaves fall from the tree.” -Al-Bukhari and Muslim

It turned out that I had torn the ligaments in my knee and had to walk on krutches for a while. This is when I realized just how weak I was without Allah. I felt that this misfotune was a punishment for the way I had forgotten Allah over the preceding year for I had abandoned my prayers and traveled a faulty road. I hadn’t been a good example of a person you could call a good Muslim.

At that moment, I burst into endless tears. These tears were filled with mixed emotions, negative and positive. My heart was full of mixed anger and fear because I knew that I had been disobeying Allah’s word during the past year. It took me an injury to realize where I was and where I was going. That’s when I realized that I had to steer my direction and pick a different path. My tears continued to flow, but they had transformed from tears of malice into tears of repentance, and then into tears of awakening.

“The greatest reward goes together with the greatest affliction. When Allah loves people, He tests them. All who are content receive His good pleasure. Those who are angry receive His anger.” -At-tirmidhi

So that’s how it all happened. Alhamdulillah. If I hadn’t spilled my feelings onto this page, some might think I’m crazy being grateful about my injury. But sometimes when we’re not paying attention to what is really there and what we are forgetting, we need to be shoved and it can be painful sometimes. What we need to do is accept it and understand that there is reason and wisdom behind it. I’m glad that I got punished for my sinful actions here on this earth. Better now than in the afterlife where punishment is much more severe than we can imagine.

“And whoever does evil or wrongs himself but afterwards seeks Allah’s forgiveness, he will find Allah Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (4:110)

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