There is an interesting situation that confuses many: the believer who is affliced with a calamity, and who then invokes Allah constantly, yet sees no signs of an answer to his prayers. Then when he comes near to the point of hopelessness, the true worth of his heart is found out. If he is pleased with what Allah (swt) has decreed for him, without losing hope of Allah's Favor, then in most situations it is at this point that such a person's supplications are answered, answered because his test is over: his faith has shined through and the Devil has been defeated. So it is at the time of near hopelessness that the worth of man is judged. This meaning is alluded to in the saying of Allah:
"Or think that you will enter Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you? They were afflicted with severe poverty and ailments and were so shaken that even the Messenger (pbuh) and those who believed along with him said:"When (will come) the Help of Allah?" Yes! Certainly, the Help of Allah is near!" (Qur'an 2:214)
After Ya'qub (as) lost his son, much time elapsed, yet he never lost hope of relief. Instead of relief, another of his sons was then taken away, and even then he did not lose hope of Allah's Favor and Mercy:
"So patience is most fitting (for me). It may be that Allah will bring them all (back) to me, Truly He! Only He is All-Knowing All Wise". (Qur'an 12:83)
And similar were the words and sentiments of Zakariyyah (as):
"And I have never been unblest in my invocation to You, O my Lord!" (Qur'an 19:4)
Never, therefore, should one feel that too much time has passed by without his supplication being answered. One should realize that, whenever one is tested with hardship, one's mettle and faith are being tested. To pass such a test, one muct drive away the whispers of the Devil and then turn for help to the Most-Merciful, the Most-Generous the Most-Wise.
- Gems and Jewels, by Abdul Malik Mujahid.