All praises and adorations belong to Allah, the Lord of the universe. May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon His last messenger, and his household, and his companions, and all those who follow their path till the day of judgement.
In essence, anxiety and sadness are part of the human condition and parcel of human life and part of being “human”. It is a normal human emotion that more or less all human beings experience in different phases in their lives as long as they live. Life is a series of moments. At the two extremes are joyful moments that make our hearts sing with gladness and dark moments that plunge us into worry and discomfort . In between is real life; the highs, the lows, the mundane and boring, the sweetness, and light. It is in these times that the believer must try to establish a connection to God. Allah, the Most High says:
وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّكُم بِشَيْءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوْفِ وَالْجُوعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الْأَمْوَالِ وَالْأَنفُسِ وَالثَّمَرَاتِ ۗ وَبَشِّرِ الصَّابِرِينَ * الَّذِينَ إِذَا أَصَابَتْهُم مُّصِيبَةٌ قَالُوا إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ * أُولَٰئِكَ عَلَيْهِمْ صَلَوَاتٌ مِّن رَّبِّهِمْ وَرَحْمَةٌ ۖ وَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُهْتَدُونَ
Be sure we shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods or lives or the fruits (of your toil), but give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere * Who say, when afflicted with calamity: "To Allah We belong, and to Him is our return * They are those on whom (Descend) blessings from Allah, and Mercy, and they are the ones that receive guidance." Qur'an 2 : 155-157.
The Quran, the holy book of Islam, provides ample examples from the lives of different messengers-who were the greatest of all human beings-that they all went through pain, suffering and the resulting sadness in their lives. From that perspective, we can conclude that sadness is “normal”. According to Islamic teachings, God Himself claims that it is HE who bestows happiness and sadness:
وَأَنَّهُ هُوَ أَضْحَكَ وَأَبْكَىٰ
“IT IS HE WHO MAKES YOU LAUGH AND CRY” (Qur'an 53:43)
But still that immense sadness of Prophets and Messengers (Peace be upon them) didn’t stop them from pursuing their missions even more vigorously. Their sadness didn’t result in hopelessness nor in a state of inaction.
Life is filled with triumphs and tribulations. Sometimes it is a roller coaster ride. One day our faith is high and sweet, the next it has plummeted and we feel sad and worried. The way to even out our journey is to trust that God knows what is best for us. Even when seemingly bad things happen, there is a purpose and wisdom behind them. Sometimes the purpose is known only to God, sometimes it is obvious.
The life of this world was designed by our Creator to maximize our chances of living a blissful life in the Hereafter. When we face trials, they help us grow and mature into human beings who are able to function effortlessly in this transient world.
As believers, our trust in God must be constant, in all situations, good, bad, easy, or difficult because we were brought here to be tested. So, we should not let the occurrence of grief and sorrow lead us anxiety and disquiet. Whatever happens in this world happens by the permission of Allah and whatever our circumstances may be we need to thank and praise God for them.
When we are mindful of the fact that there is nothing befall in our life except by the will of Allah and that He ultimately wants us to live forever in Paradise, we can begin to leave our sadness and worry behind. God loves us, and wants what is best for us.
In conclusion, whenever we are beset by sadness and worry our first reaction should always be turning to God. By recognizing His Greatness and Omnipotence, we begin to understand that God alone can ease our troubled souls. God Himself advised us to call on Him.
وَلِلَّهِ الْأَسْمَاءُ الْحُسْنَىٰ فَادْعُوهُ بِهَا ۖ وَذَرُوا الَّذِينَ يُلْحِدُونَ فِي أَسْمَائِهِ ۚ سَيُجْزَوْنَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ
“And (all) the Most Beautiful Names belong to Allah, so call on Him by them, and leave the company of those who belie or deny (or utter impious speech against) His Names.” (Quran 7:180)