We all love our Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) simply because he brought us divine guidance and helped us find our way to Truth. He is called the light, as Almighty Allah says: “Now hath come unto you light from Allah and a plain Scripture.” (Al-Ma’idah: 15). He suffered many kinds of trials for the sake of Allah and conveying the message of Islam to mankind.
Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states: “ I am convinced that a reflective reading of the seerah would enable us see how the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) overcame and transcended the various circumstances and marched to glory and success. Such an exercise would therefore be highly insightful and illuminating for us in our own predicament today. Let me mention a few points that we can readily discern from a reading of the seerah:
1. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) had a tremendous reservoir of spiritual energy to draw upon all the time. We find him turning to Allah in the darkest moments of his life when all that he could see around him was rejection and mocking. Look at him while being chased out of Ta’if by hooligans and children, who pelted him with stones and ridiculed him. He never felt weakened or disempowered by the experience, rather he sought solace and strength in Allah by opening his heart before Him through a fervent supplication.
2. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was always optimistic and positive in his mindset. He always looked at every setback or trial as an opportunity. He never failed to see the light at the end of the tunnel. His mind was always focused on the end of his journey. Wasn’t he the one who said in Makkah, while he was facing persecutions and ridicule all around him, “I will continue the struggle until a woman can travel all by herself all the way from San`a’ to Hadramawt without any fear of molestation!”
3. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) consistently cultivated the habit of [demonstrating] shukr (gratitude) and sabr (patience and perseverance). As one of the great scholars said, “A believer, like a bird, flies to Allah with two wings, namely shukr and sabr.” Through gratitude we come to appreciate Allah’s blessings, while through perseverance, we learn to preserve patience. For it would help us to know that Allah exposes us to trials not to destroy us but only to help us grow.
4. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was ever willing to surrender Himself to the Lord. He strove to achieve his goals as humanly as possible and hoped his efforts would bear fruit, yet if they didn’t turn out the way he had expected, he never complained or fretted over it, rather he accepted the inevitable will of Allah with full grace and serenity.
5. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) looked at every trial he faced in life as an empowering experience. Thus, when he suffered defeat in Uhud, he used it to learn the lesson of better discipline. Likewise, he looked at the initial set back in Hunayn as a lesson in humility so that he [and we who follow him] must never get carried away by our might or large numbers, forgetting the spiritual and moral strength.”