They can be so kind and so good to you. They can shower you with their love and embrace you with compliments and beautiful gestures.
People can also be the opposite of amazing—that we know. Yet my focus has been on the divine fortress which both encompasses and protects in a way that no person could even imagine. It simultaneously surrounds us with complete acceptance while blocking out rejection. Within the walls of this fortress, you find yourself.
For me, this fortress is a metaphor for my yearning to develop a real relationship with my Creator. By real, I mean something that goes beyond meaningless utterances of reverence and soulless acts of devotion. Something raw…something ugly. Something that looks like a woman of God drenched in her shortcomings, sin and longing for the Divine.
For so long, the awareness that God knew everything about me – all of me – was something that evoked within me a deep shame. What people could never imagine about me, God knew. What people could never understand about me, God encompassed. The masks I wore, and occasionally still wear, melted into their real forms before God. Mirages that were only real to the human eye but could never fool the Divine, who saw all.
And then I decided to jump headfirst into the most loving relationship I could find, which meant releasing the shame and knowing that God’s mercy encompassed my self-judgements. That my shame was rooted not in God’s inability to forgive me, but in my inability to forgive myself. That my shame could never be lifted by any delight nor by any man. That only God could carry me as I struggled to carry my burdens.
After the jump, I found myself swimming in a pool of light. A light that has continued to illuminate the darkest corners of my heart and the gloomiest moments in my life.
Within this fortress, I struggle not with fears of abandonment and disloyalty, but rejoice in an infinite love that both fills and completes me. With God, my insecurities are moot. What use are insecurities when your Beloved knows what distresses your soul? When your pains and fears exist only with His permission? When your faults are but a testament to the humanity in which you were created? When your most intimate thoughts and desires are known to Him before they manifest?
What better companion than the Lord of the universe and the celestial bodies which inhabit it? Of the wind and mountains and crystal-like drops of rain? Of the heavens and the laughing child? Of the pen that writes and the eyes that weep?
What better abode than the fortress of the Divine?
How amazing is the love of your Beloved?
And Allah (exalted is He) knows best.