In a world filled with so much hate, just a smile from a stranger makes my day these days. A good deed warms my heart and good conversation becomes the best of gifts.
I lost my Oyster card today. The equivalent of a month’s worth of travel. And for seconds I couldn’t think. I tried to stay calm but I felt my stress level double as I began to think of how I will be able to afford transportation now. It’s funny how those things can affect our spirit. Things like loss of money. But it does.
As I searched where I was at work, I realized that some one probably just helped themselves to my Oyster card as it lay in the pockets of my coat draped on a canteen chair. One of the staff women volunteered to walk with me to the station. It was well past sunset and fully dark.
I said thank you as I thought “…and this is enough.”
And even as we walked, I still felt myself about to cry. I instead tried to have dikr and imaam that this too shall pass.
And she said, “Baytree is going to miss you Amira.”
I smiled so big, “Why do you say this. I feel as if I didn’t do enough.”
She shook her head, “No, you came in and took control. The girls are very difficult but you manage them well.”
I thanked her and thought to myself “…this is enough.”
We continued to talk about how stupid one feels when they loose their Oyster card. She also told me of her fears of getting her visa renewed and how she does not want to live in Colombia after having a job here in London. I decided to recognize that I am not the only person in this world with problems.
When I made it to the station, I first went to the side store to buy another card. I was so slow. I couldn’t make up my mind. Week pass? Day pass? Bus pass? Finally, I decided to take it one day at a time. I walked over to a machine to purchase a day bus pass. I prefer taking the bus nowadays instead of the underground subway, anyway. But, my card was rejected. I panicked. Then, walked over to the official ticket office as I counted just enough change to buy a day bus pass.
Finally I get to the window and ask, “Can I buy a bus pass,” in my usual flat voice. I’m sure the enthusiasm showed on my face.
“No,” the man behind the glass pane replied.
“No.” Then he smiled. It was a joke.
I laughed and said okay, thankful for the humour but still uninterested in anything other than getting home as quickly as possible.
“Why are you so serious?” he asks.
“I just lost my Oyster card,” I replied. Surely, everyone in London knows that this is nothing to smile about. Transportation is expensive.
He tells me that I have to register the card and then I’ll get it in a few days. He handed me my ticket and smiled, “Here you go, my love.”
We both laughed at how easy this “problem” could be solved.
“Thanks,” I said leaving and thinking to myself, “…and this is enough.”
I run across the street and get to the bus stop just in time to see 159. I press the card and it doesn’t scan. Crap.
The guy says, “I’ll take care of it,” and nods for me to continue.
This is enough.
As I sat on the bus with my iPod in my ears, I still felt like crying. Which is bad because, lately, it seems like every bus ride I’ve had these past few days I’ve been shedding tears, mashaAllah. Happy tears though. Tears of understanding.
Some people thing that only poverty and struggle are tests. But wealth and affluence are tests as well. Maybe, just maybe, Allah subhana wa’taallah is preparing me for a bigger test, or the greater jihad, as known by the Believers.
So many of the people in my life swear that I will be successful, influential, prosperous, wealth even. But I can only see what is in front of me.
If I am to be blessed with wealth, than I will be tested with that, inshaAllah.
But for now, I can only count today.
And, this is enough.
And with that, I have a confession to make: I hate to ask for things. I do not know how to receive favors. And I take gifts without grace.
It’s kind of like in the poem by Marianne Williamson “…who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?”
But, mashaAllah, I was listening to a podcast speech today by Sh. Yusef Estes and he was talking about asking for the best. He, in quoting the Sunnah, was saying how when we make Dua and ask Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala for blessings, do not say “please” or “just a little”. Say “give me the best.”
In quoting from a hadith, he says how Rasulallah (peace be upon him) said: you ask for a little as if it is difficult for God to provide for you. Ask for everything. Ask for the best. Ask for what you want and then support it with a good deed.
So, instead of worrying, I’m going to ask for the best and I’ll be plenty busy trying to match my good deeds to my requests, inshaAllah.
That’s all for now,
Our Greatest Fear
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other
people won’t feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of
God that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.