I had a question regarding punishment.
I have heard that Allah will test people whom he loves. They will go through difficulty in their life, sometimes.
I have also heard that Allah punishes whom disobey him.
So I was wondering how to we know if the difficulty is an azab of Allah or is Allah testing us?
First of all, Its’s not Allah’s habit to punish people. Allah doesn’t like sending Azaab down. That is why we see that Tsunamis and earthquakes, etc. are very rare occurrences whereas peace, security, good health, prosperity, rainwater cultivation etc. are the norm. So don’t let your mind wander towards punishment. Punishments are for the disobedient ones, the obedient are tested.
Think about those who were before us; who went through severe tests and stayed patient. As a result, Allah blessed them with so much in the hereafter that they would not have attained that status through Ibaadat.
Sayyiduna Hussain radiallahu anhu sacrificed his life to uphold the truth. He was murdered mercilessly. His rank was raised all the more. His murderers died very swiftly and they were tormented by their actions while at the same time they will face Azab in the aakhirah, unless Allah forgives them, of course.
This was a test for sayyiduna Hussain and ahle bayt which they passed with full marks. They were the most patient people of the time.
May Allah bless you with Sabr Jameel and help you with your problems.