So, you casually resolved to maintain a smiling, cheerful countenance in Ramadan. Little did you know that something apparently so easy will also prove a tough nut to crack at times.
It’s actually quite uplifting, easy and fun to be cheerful with people who are good to you. But who wants to be cheerful around obnoxious people who take every opportunity to put you down and make you feel inferior? Their smirks, their snide comments and self-righteous attitudes can be as irksome as long nails screeching on a blackboard. This breed of people seem hell-bent to make your life miserable. They will doubt your intentions, discredit you for your good and highlight your mistakes. How can you be nice with them especially when you’re already fuzzy-brained because of hunger? How can you maintain a smiling countenance when you wish you could chew their heads off? In fact, why do such exasperating people even exist? Allah says:
“..We have made some of you as a trial for others: will you have patience? for Allah is One Who sees (all things).” (Surah al-Furqan, ayah 20)
Everyone has their share of ‘nuts’ in their lives. But you have it clearly spelled out in the ayah: 1)the reason 2)the cure (patience) and 3)the encouragement and satisfaction (that Allah is watching).
A believer is soft in the inside but sturdy on the outside. Don’t let people get to you and distract you from your destination: Jannah. Also know that your smile is precious- after all, it is a sadaqah and a Sunnah! Don’t lose it or your sleep over what Mr. X said and Ms. Y said.
Be good to others for the Pleasure of Allah. The not-so-good ones are there so that you can gauge and purify your intentions. So, have a mind of your own. And don’t just mirror what the other person does to you. Be better. Be the bigger person. Just like the sun shines on all and the rain falls on all- the good and the evil. The Prophet (sallalahu alaihi wasallam) gave us priceless advice:
“Do not be people without minds of your own, saying that if others treat you well you will treat them well, and that if they do wrong you will do wrong. But (instead) accustom yourselves to do good if people do good and not to do wrong if they do evil.” (Tirmidhi)
Oh, and make sure that you are not the one proving to be a tough trial for others around you. How do you ensure that? Simple: Treat others exactly as you would love to be treated.