Thursday, November 20, 2008

Islam and The Art of Pencil Sharpening

We had an art project today (making an art aquarium) which was on the heels of us making a book (The Barak Obama Story) so it was time to sharpen the colored pencils.
After a long day, it was me and a huge pile of pencils without points.
I zoned.
Sometimes, when you zone, you find God easier than if you focused.
I was dissapointed that one pencil wasn't sharpening well. It was being eaten up by the blades and was dissapearing before my eyes. I stopped. It wasn't worth my effort. I looked. "Made in China," was perhaps the reason why.
Yes, quality matters.
We all are dull and purposeless. We are all sharpened. It hurts. WALLAHI it hurts. But, if we are made of quality, then we don't just get eaten up and spit out. We are made better by the process.
We are then a tool to be used for something which will last beyond our boundaries of time or space.
I looked at the clock. It was time to catch my ride.
Still no car. Don't ask.
Come to find out that my ride was not happening on this cold, windy night. I walked. I walked because that's the way Allah was going to sharpen me tonight.
With each step, I felt like crying. Dang shoes! They are fine to work in, but horrible in which to go walking. I stopped the upset rising inside of me.
"Alhumdulillah," I spoke as I strode on faster. My big woolen throw from Wales was wrapping my chapped hands from the chill.
"Allahu Akbar," I said as I went up the hill. Yes, I was suffering, but if I can remember my love for Allah in that hard moment, then I am improving myself and proving my devotion. We can't just love God in the good times.
My little itsy bitsy hardship was nothing compared to Prophet Ayub "Job". He never lost his faith. He never forgot how Allah's plan is best. Didn't ask "Why?" Didn't say, "Why me?!"
If he could say, "Allahu Akbar," then certainly I can too.
It is truly left to been seen how Allah will use me once I am through this paring down but I put my trust in Allah that my future will be colorful, useful, and long-lasting. Inshahallah.

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