My mum just had one of her prayers answered after almost 10 years of asking Allah (swt). In fact, I think she gave up actively asking several years ago, and just chucked it to qadar.
When her prayer got answered, it was unexpected and it came at the most perfect of all times. A time when she will appreciate it the most as a mercy from Allah. A time that she will enjoy it the most if Allah wills.
So we were on the phone discussing this new gift of hers from Allah, and it occurred to us both, literally at the same time, that this was something she had wished for a good part of her adult life. But it took almost 10 years for her to get it.
And that got me thinking of everything I ask Allah for at night and expect by morning. It reminded me of the fact that even though I try to see myself as a patient person, I am one of those people who expect an instant response to my prayer. I want to see the results of my prayers the way I want them, as soon as I want them.
“And We will surely test you with something of fear and hunger and a loss of wealth and lives and fruits, but give good tidings to the patient,”(Qur’an 2:155)
“No-one makes a dua without one of three things happening. Either it is answered, or it is stored up for him, or wrong actions are atoned for by it.” Muwatta Imam Malik
How long are you willing to wait for something you asked Allah for? Do you resign yourself to fate, or you put your reliance in Allah knowing that He knows the best response for you?
I draw my patience from this Qur’an verse, and the hadith quoted above. Knowing that like my mother, a prayer request delayed doesn’t mean a prayer response denied.