Our prophet SAAW taught us that patience is light in darkness, it is the way when lost, it is the solution to every problem, it is both conceptual and practical. I grew up knowing this in theory, perceiving patience as a fuzzy warm feeling you get when deciding to share your favorite toy or when you decide to not yell at an annoying sibling or not to talk back to your parents. I thought I knew patience! I would explain it in halaqas, I would console my friends with it…I thought I had it. But I couldn’t have been more wrong.
I am realizing that every time I need patience, I have to learn it all over again. It isn’t something I could master and keep with me forever. It is much like a cunning friend that comes and goes. One that you are constantly running after, constantly looking for, constantly wanting to impress and keep close. I am realizing that I need it all the time! With every choice I make and with every turn I take. I am needing it to go through every process, and to accept every outcome. I am needing it to build myself and grow. I am needing it even when I decide to let go.
And every time I feel that I have finally caught up to it, every time I feel that I can finally hug a most beloved and most needed friend, it turns into a shadow and mocks me for thinking that I ever could.
But I won’t give up because I also realized that being in constant pursuit of patience has allowed me to taste the sweetness of faith in so many different flavors.