The Restart

By: Zainun Nadhirah Abdul Nasir, 3rd year, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University

Ring… ring….

No answer.

Atikah tried again.

Ring… ring….

No response, again.

She sighed. The mobile phone is being put slowly onto the desk. She then threw herself over the bed. With eyes being closed, she shouted to herself inside, how many times should she try…?

After few minutes of lying down, she got herself up and went to the balcony. The vast scenery of the evening smoothen the frown over her face a little bit. Out of blue, something on the path below caught her eyes. A fragile, small kitten seemed to lose its way, looking around the street finding its mother, probably.

With admiration, she continued watching.

“Getting fresh air outside?”

Atikah felt a pat on her back. She turned her head around and saw Raihan, her housemate.  Raihan’s face was brightened with a friendly smile. Atikah nodded lifelessly.

“Are you okay? You seem down,” Raihan sounded worried.

“Naa, it’s nothing. No big deal at all,” replied Atikah with an attempt of smiling.

“Okay. If you sure.”

Few minutes passed by as they stared towards the blue sky. Sounds of birds chirping filled in their silence as they continued enjoying the stunning view of creations of God before them.

“What you will do, if someone constantly rejected your advices? In spite of, after you have tried every means that you could think of?”

The question that broke their silence made Raihan raised up her left eyebrow. “I’ll try another way then.”

“Even though you’re sure that you’re going to fail, over and over?” Atikah tested her friend.

“I understand. The logic is simply like this, if someone doesn’t want to listen to us, then why bother? They won’t change. Isn’t it the truth?” Raihan shot a question back.

Atikah replied with silence.

“Did you know the story of Thaif?” Atikah stared at Raihan.

“Rasulullah SAW preached da’wah to them and what did he get? Rejections in addition of stones until his blood filled up his shoes. But, did Rasulullah SAW ever give up?” Raihan continued. “No. Instead of saying yes to Jibril AS who wanted to destroy all of them, he prayed to Allah to forgive them. Because he claimed that they did not know what he’s preaching about.”

Atikah breathed out a sigh. “If this is Rasulullah SAW we’re talking about. Then, it’s not a wonder. He’s the best person on the earth and no way could I do the same like him.”

“His story is not for us to listen to only, you know. Isn’t Rasulullah SAW the best role model for all of us to follow?” Raihan looked intensely into her friend’s brown eyes.

Atikah nodded, weakly.

“You know,” Raihan continued. “Nobody could ever imagine putting hope in Firaun and the people of Prophet Nuh AS.”

Atikah fixed her gaze towards her friend with left eyebrow raised.

“Just imagine, how could you preach da’wah to a person who was killing innocent babies for years? Or to the people who shut their ears and faces up whenever you approached them? It is almost impossible, right?”

Atikah nodded quietly.

“But did Nabi Musa AS and Nuh AS ever give up? Never! Even seconds before the death of Firaun in the sea, Allah still opened up the door of taubah for him. The only reason why he died in kufr is because he pleaded to Jibril AS for help, not from Allah. Had he pleaded to Allah, it is for sure Allah will rescue him,” told Raihan earnestly.

“And Nabi Nuh A.S, he never stopped preaching da’wah to his people for 950 years until the big flood came and swept everyone out except Nabi Nuh A.S and his little followers. Back then, he was still hoping for his son to make taubah and joined the ship. The only reason he gave up was because Allah told him to do so.”

Atikah nodded. This time, briskly.

“So, everybody was deserved to be put hope in before the death reach us, right?” Raihan asked with a smile over her face.

Atikah throw a smile bright and thankfully to Raihan. She then engrossed herself into the evening scenery again. She noticed something! There, down the street. The small kitten has reunited with its mother and walking together towards their home! She assumed.

Atikah continued smiling. No pain, no gain! She reminded herself.

That night, Atikah tried to make a phone call again.

Ring… ring….

“Hello?”

The phone is being answered!

“Assalamualaikum, Nadhirah! How are you? It has been a long time since I hear from you! Mind to join lunch with me tomorrow?”

The journey of da’wah is then restarted.

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