Allah has provided us with choices that we can make while living in this world. He has showed us the truth and also allowed Satan to distract us toward falsehood. There are some amongst us who go the extra mile and strive to stay closer to the path of the truth. Others, on the other hand find it difficult to stay away from the falsehood that Satan packages in the form of lusts and other attractions. We find in this world noble people in whose company we can find it easier to stay closer to Allah’s truth. We can also find little satans in this world who are looking for easy preys to distract many of us from Allah’s message of truth.
As we make the choices in our lives, we are faced with the consequences of pain and pleasure, regrets and happiness. The wise amongst us discern the difference and make the right choices. Above all, they keep their goals in focus so they are not distracted. Consider what ibn Al-Qayyim said:
Walking thereon (in this life) is like walking in a land that is filled with beasts, and water that teams with crocodiles. That which causes delight, turns to be the source of grief. Pain is found in the midst of pleasures, and delights are derived from its sorrows. As a bird sees the wheat, so does one’s insight perceive polytheism, while vain desires render its holder blind.
Lusts were granted in abundance to humans, but those who believed in the unseen turned away from them, while those who follow their lusts were caused to regret.
The first category, are those, in which Allah says,
which means, “They are on (true) guidance from their Lord, and they are the successful.” (Al-Baqarah, 2:5)
However, the other category, are those to whom Allah says,
which means, “(O you)! Eat and enjoy yourselves (in this worldly life) for a little while. Verily, you are the Mujrimun (sinners, criminals, etc.).” (Al-Mursalat, 77:46)
When the successful ones are aware of the reality of this worldly life being sure of the inferiority of its degree, they overcame their vain desires for the sake of the Hereafter. They have been awakened from their heedlessness to remember what their enemies took from them during their period of idleness. Whenever they perceive the distant journey they must undertake, they remember their aim, so it appears easy for them. Whenever life becomes bitter, they remember this verse, in which Allah says,
which means, “This is your Day which you were promised.” (Surah Al-Anbiya, 21:103)
Allah has made the outcomes of our choices (for all decisions) quite clear. It’s up to us to choose wisely.