A believer’s awareness that he is being tested leads him to look at events from the future. But what does “looking at events from the future” actually mean?
However great the troubles and difficulties confronting a person may be, the situation is definitely only temporary. Someone may be falsely accused of a crime and subjected to injustice, for example. Yet there will definitely come a time when the truth emerges. Even if the suffering of a person does not come to an end in this world, those responsible for that injustice will receive due retribution on the Day of Judgement. In the same way, the person who suffered injustice can hope for a splendid reward for his patience on that day. Time passes very quickly and, like everything else, this state of affairs will come to an end in the mere blink of an eye. In addition, the Qur’an reveals that hardship comes with ease for Muslims:
For truly with hardship comes ease; truly with hardship comes ease. (Surat Al-Inshirah, 5-6)
A believer trusts in our Lord’s infinite justice, expects the ease that will follow hardship, and never falls into despair in the face of any situation. He remembers that the difficulties he experiences will re-appear before him as delights in this world and in the next.
A Muslim knows that he is watching the destiny. One delightful aspect of this secret is that he watches everything in spirit of trusting Allah, submission and resignation.
We must not forget that this is a state of mind unique to true believers in God, one that only those who are completely submitted to destiny can fully experience. People who are heedless of religion, on the other hand, fall prey to despair, fear and stress because of their failure to submit to destiny, and imagine that there is no way out for them. Since they have no hopes or expectation for the Hereafter, they are always restless and troubled. The state of mind of such people is described as follows in another verse:
When Allah desires to guide someone, He expands his breast to Islam. When He desires to misguide someone, He makes his breast narrow and constricted as if he were climbing up into the sky. That is how Allah defiles those who do not believe. (Surat al-An‘am, 125)
This troubled state of mind described in the verse is a self-inflicted wound that stems from these people’s failure to submit to the destiny created by God. The fact that God, the Omniscient and Almighty, directs a person’s destiny and rules all things is a great blessing for a believer. However, people whose faith is weak or who have no faith at all are unable to comprehend the value of that blessing. They are therefore unable to resign themselves to destiny and are troubled at every moment of their lives. This condition is actually a spiritual reward for lack of trust in Allah imposed in the life of this world. These people merely wrong themselves.
Allah does not wrong people in any way; rather it is people who wrong themselves. (Surah Yunus, 44)