“Alhamdulillah” whispered Zainab as she woke up that day, goosebumps all over her body, reacting to the coldest winter she has ever felt. The snow was falling heavily outside her bedroom window. Zainab jumped out of bed even though her insides were yelling and struggling to face the cold air.
“Brrrr…” she was shivering badly as her hands made contact with the freezing water for wudhu’.
When she was done with her tahajjud, she remembered that it was the 10th day of Muharram and thus prayed to Allah for forgiveness and hoping that 1433H will be the best year ever.
She suddenly remembered the Zainab that she was two years ago. A Zainab who was so lazy at performing the five-times prayers (let alone the sunnah prayers), who can hardly be seen reading the Quran and, all-in-all, was a really obnoxious girl.
She remembered exactly how that Zainab slowly changed (and is still trying) to become a faithful servant, who loves her God and the Messenger more than anything else in this world, who would listen to her parents and try to please them the way Allah wants it. Trying to become a muslimah who is always smiling and giving salam to the people she meets on the streets and a student who is ihsan and disciplined in her studies.
In every prayer, she prays to Allah to let her die as a martyr like Zainab bintu Rasulullah and Zainab al-Ghazali, and that the dunya doesn’t occupy any part of her heart. Besides praying to become a better person, Zainab knows she must face all the challenges that are already waiting for her because she truly believes;
أَمْ حَسِبْتُمْ أَن تَدْخُلُوا الْجَنَّةَ وَلَمَّا يَعْلَمِ اللَّـهُ الَّذِينَ جَاهَدُوا مِنكُمْ وَيَعْلَمَ الصَّابِرِينَ
“Or do you think that you will enter Paradise while Allah has not yet made evident those of you who fight in His cause and made evident those who are steadfast?”
Zainab got up from her praying mat and joined the rest of her family for sahur in the dining room, feeling more motivated to go through the year with a clearer goal; meeting Allah in paradise.
Shathirah Abd Halim
3rd year medicine
Jordan University of Science & Technology