The question is, where does our patience come from?
Ok we said part of being Muslim is that you got to be patient. It’s a necessity of life. We’re going to be tested and therefore patience is required.
But where do we seek this patience from?
Well, the first place we seek patience from is our spirituality, our connection with our Lord. And that was the way of the prophets. When they were struck with a calamity, when they went through hardship, they needed to be patient. They knew they had to be patient in this moment. Who did they turn to? They turned to Allah Almighty.
When Allah is telling us to be patient, know that what’s meant here is that, “be patient by asking Allah to make you patient”.
And we know the story of Prophet Jacob when going through a severely difficult time in his life losing two of his beloved children. What did he do?
I only complain to Allah with my grief and sorrow.
That is the way of the Prophet Muhammad and all the Prophets.
Story of Ibn Abbas’ Patience
There is a famous story of Ibn Abbas when he was on a journey with some of his companions, a messenger comes and whispered something into his ear. Ibn Abbas listens to what he has to say, then he immediately faced the Qiblah and prayed two units of prayer.
The companions were curious about what happened and they asked the messenger:
“What news did you bring ibn Abbas?”
“I brought him the news of the death of his son.”
Ibn Abbas finished his prayer and his friends asked him:
“Why did you do that? We didn’t see the expression on your face changed, we didn’t see you cry… we didn’t see any reaction from you. You just turned around and prayed.”
Ibn Abbas said:
“Haven’t you heard that Allah said:
Those of you who believe, seek help in patience and prayer. Allah is with those who are patient.
That was the understanding of Ibn Abbas. That was the education that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) gave to the companions. They knew in the moment of calamity and difficulty they have to immediately turn to Allah because relief and comfort can only come from Allah in that moment.
You can have the best friend in the world, the person who knows you the best. You can go talk to your soul mate, talk to your therapist, talk to whoever you want, but compared to Allah means nothing. Because the comfort that Allah can bring us in those moments is unparalleled.
That was the upbringing that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) gave his companions.