Friday, January 28, 2011


Allah’s embrace can end worlds or begin them.
Allah’s embrace can bring hope or despair.
Allah’s embrace can lead one
—kicking and screaming—to heaven or to hell.

Allah’s embrace can kindle resentment or affection.
Allah’s embrace can bring clarity or madness.
Allah’s embrace can snuff out your life or redeem it.

And the mystery of it is that these opposites
—life and death, sadness and joy, suffering and grace—
are always performed with one and the same act.

How you perceive it is largely determined
by the posture of your hand:
is it open to receive, or is it balled into a fist?

Najat knows life can be hard.
I’ve seen my share of blessings wrapped in pain.
I, too, struggle to behold all that Allah gives as a gift.

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