Finding the Best Friend

Image best friendA wide ocean, stretching for miles lay before me. Far away there was a wooden ship, floating away on the dark-coloured sea. The sun had set taking almost all the light of the world away as if a lantern had just blown out. My friends had deserted me for superficial and shallow whims and fancies of life.

I stood up, my hands in my pockets and looked towards the sky with sadness as if I were looking for guidance. It was dark all around and I could barely make out the shapes of the objects around me.

Suddenly, I saw an old woman sitting on a white bench. Her face was calm and the silver in her hair reflected wisdom. Just as I was about to turn back, she caught my sight and smiled gently. Unsure of myself I smiled back faintly. With a gesture of her hand she called me over. Hesitating to approach a complete stranger, I slowly moved towards her and took a seat at a careful distance. She smiled with a twinkle in her eyes, “Isn’t it a beautiful evening?” Trying to match her enthusiasm, I nodded gently, “Yes.” Eyeing me cautiously she inquired, “My child … why do you look so sad?” I tried to force a smile, “Oh no, no, I was just strolling about on my own.”

She looked into my face with her large brown eyes, closed the book in her lap and carried on gently, “Dear child, I do not know you or for that matter whatever it is that is bothering you, but I also have a grandchild just your age. She lives far away and we usually talk to each other through letters on the computer!” I smiled, “Oh you mean over the e-mail?” She chirped, “Yeah, that’s our postman! And you know whenever she is unhappy or lonely she always writes to me. And I always give her the same advice, ‘Talk to your best friend and He will not only understand but also guide you!’“

I looked at her quizzically, “Who is her best friend?” She boomed with delight, “Why Allah, of course!” Following my confused look she went on, ”You see, many times in life there is hardly anything anyone can do for you but there is always something Allah (swt) can do for you if you call out to Him. Then He sends you help and guidance through other people and sources. Let’s say … just now you may have bumped into me so that I can guide you. But in reality Allah (swt) worked it out for you, you see?”

It all started to sink in suddenly. She continued, “Never give up. Allah is Great and Most Merciful. Never hope to find perfect friends in your life either. Allah is the only ‘best friend’, as you call it. He says so in the Quran: ‘And you cannot escape from Allah in the earth, and besides Allah you have neither any Wali (guardian or a protector) nor any helper.’ (Shura 42:31)

Then she stood up, bade me goodbye and left. After a little while, I, too, came out of my thoughts and moved on towards the edge of the ocean. I could still see the wooden ship moving away. But now I felt much better. There was light everywhere, even though the sun was not present.

All of a sudden I realized that Allah (swt) has chosen me over so many to find my way, and win now and forever. Allah (swt) will certainly choose my friends for me so that I can stay guided and help others stumbling on the way. I would want no other replacement for this priceless relation with my Creator. Dear Allah (swt), thank you for being my Best Friend!