I came across this humbling reflection on Sh. Hamza Yusuf’s blog :
“According to a beautiful hadith, the Prophet, God bless and grant him peace, said that on the Last Day, when the last two souls are brought forth before God, they are both condemned to hell. As the angels escort them to their final fiery abode, one of them wistfully looks back. Thereupon, God commands the angels to bring him back and asks the man why he turned back. The man replies, “I was expecting something else from you.” God responds, commanding the angels, “Take him to My Garden.”
It is our expectation of God that determines where we are. This points up the need for thinking well not only of God but also of God’s creation, despite the fact that we are all messy, imperfect works in progress, struggling along in this journey.
We either surrender to God or to the substitutes for God, which are invariably hollow. But true love, which is the love of God, is the single most powerful force in the world. It is a love that “alters not when it alteration finds.” It grows and never diminishes. If someone claims to have lost it, it can only be said that such a person did not have it to begin with. “It is the star to every wandering bark.” And in loving God, one must paradoxically love all of God’s creation, merely for the incontrovertible fact that everything is God’s creation. God does love everything in that He brought everything into existence from an act of divine love, and those who love God purely, and with the penetrating inner eye of reality, can only be a mercy while in the world.”
Read the entire article, A Reflection on Divine Love, here.