Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

Chapter 12 of the Quran tells the story of Prophet Joseph and how because of the misdeeds of his step brothers, his father, Prophet Jacob was deprived of his two beloved sons. At the time of this incident, he uttered this prayer: “I only complain of my anguish and my sorrow to God.” (12:86)

These words of Prophet Jacob tell us an important truth: that when the believer faces any difficult situation or experiences anguish, he does not fall to complaining like an ordinary person, but rather, mindful of his faith, turns his grief into prayer. He bows down to God and prays to Him to change his loss into gain.

When someone faces the experience of grief and loss, there are two ways in which he can react. One is to look at the relevant human element in his affliction and the other is to turn to God. Those who only look at the human aspect of things, never cease to complain about human beings. But one who starts remembering God after an untoward experience he will make the giver his central focus instead of the one who has caused him to suffer. His mind will become hopeful instead of remaining plunged in despair. Prayer has the greatest power to be of support to the believer in difficult times. Prayer is the source of this trust that no loss is final in this world: in every loss there is hidden gain.

There are moments in every person’s life when he feels helpless. At such moments, prayer to God brings a person comfort and peace. For any individual, prayer is the best source of crisis management.

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