It is a blistering hot day and the flat unending landscape is filled with terrified people rushing around. No one is concerned about his fellow colleague. Each is involved in searching for their own reprieve. Brother does not acknowledge brother, parent does not acknowledge child. Each is concerned only for their own welfare. All are flustered and thirsty. The thirst is like no other. There is no way to quench it. Water is being offered to some and it calms them down. But no one will share theirs with you. Each person is concerned only for their own welfare.

Then, amidst the crush of people, a child appears. Calm and serene and holding out a glass. People reach for it but the child will not give up his treasure. This child seems to be seeking out someone specific. As you stand there, hopeful, recognition dawns on you. Is this my baby? The one I had thought lost to me! The one I yearned for day after day, night after night, hurting and crying at the loss I had suffered. Then as the child appears to be walking straight to you, smiling and holding out the water for you, you know that at long last the promise that at one point seemed so far away has become a reality. You are reunited with your darling child whom Allah had decreed to be with you for only a short while in the dunya.

Now you will realise the value of your reward for the sabr you practised. Now your true happily ever after begins.

As you walk towards the gates of your eternal abode…

– “….til, when they reach it, its gates will be opened, and its keepers will say, ‘Salamun ‘alaykum! You have done well, so enter here to abide therein.” [Al-Zumar, 73]

“….And angels shall enter unto them from every gate [with the salutation]: ‘Peace be unto you for that you have preserved in patience! How excellent is the final home!” [Al-Ra’d: 23-4]

WOW, it truly is a sight no eyes have ever seen before, and no mind could ever have imagined. There are indeed gardens beneath which rivers flow.

Fruit in abundance hanging full and low enough to be within reach without any effort.

Best of all PEACE. No more heartache, no more tears, no more discontent. Your mind, body and heart feels perfect. So light and happy and free from all responsibility and discomfort. You know instinctively that you will never want for anything ever again. All around you is amazing beauty. Flowers, people, streams, gardens, abodes, all beautiful beyond the imagination. I could never do justice to the description no matter how hard I try. Close your eyes and try to imagine it. Then know that no matter how beautiful an image you can create it cannot even compare to what awaits the dutiful patient servant of our Lord.

Yes, beloved parents, it is no fairy tale. There really is a happily ever after. I look forward to meeting each of you special parents there, inshAllah.

by Zulaikha Osman

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