Imām Abū al-Farj ibn al-Jawzī (d. 597 AH) said concerning calamities, misfortune, and despair]:
One should know that the patience exhibited [in response to despair] is but a moment in time. Eventually absentmindedness [surrounding the source of despair] will occur such that the pain subsides. It is most suitable for a person [in such a situation] to embolden himself saying: It is but a moment then everyone who faces an affliction will feel just as we have mentioned.
If the feelings are drowned by the waves, the true seaman forgets past deception.
Know also that the one who constantly fulfils the orders of Allāh—the Exalted in Might—while healthy, is protected by Allāh in turbulent times. He (ﷺ) said:
Protect the orders of Allāh and He will protect you. Protect the orders of Allāh and you will find Him before you. Seek to know Allāh in times of happiness and He will remember you in times of difficulty.1
Do you not see that Yūnus (عليه السلام) fell into difficulty and, due to his past deeds of righteousness, he was taken by the hand and saved. [Concerning this, Allāh said:]
وَإِنَّ يُونُسَ لَمِنَ الْمُرْسَلِينَ ﴿١٣٩﴾ إِذْ أَبَقَ إِلَى الْفُلْكِ الْمَشْحُونِ ﴿١٤٠﴾ فَسَاهَمَ فَكَانَ مِنَ الْمُدْحَضِينَ ﴿١٤١﴾ فَالْتَقَمَهُ الْحُوتُ وَهُوَ مُلِيمٌ ﴿١٤٢﴾ فَلَوْلَا أَنَّهُ كَانَ مِنَ الْمُسَبِّحِينَ ﴿١٤٣﴾ لَلَبِثَ فِي بَطْنِهِ إِلَىٰ يَوْمِ يُبْعَثُونَ
And indeed, Jonah was among the messengers. [Mention] when he ran away to the laden ship. And he drew lots and was among the losers. Then the fish swallowed him, while he was blameworthy. And had he not been of those who exalt Allāh, he would have remained inside its belly until the Day they are resurrected.
[Compare this] to Pharaoh who possessed no deeds of righteousness to attach himself to in his time of hardship. Thus, it was said to him:
آلْآنَ وَقَدْ عَصَيْتَ قَبْلُ وَكُنتَ مِنَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ
“Now? And you had disobeyed [Him] before and were of the corrupters?”
1. Authentic: Narrated by al-Tirmidhī: 2553 and others. Graded authentic by al-Tirmidhī and al-Albānī in ‘Ṣaḥīh al-Tirmidhī’:2516.
Source: Al-Thabāt: 55
Translated by: Riyāḍ al-Kanadī