This follows a similar theme of a constant happening right now. In each life, be it the dunya (this life), yawm al akhir (the day of judgement), or the akhira itself (heaven or hell), there are laws that stay the same. This particular law says that the final destination of existence is not about what your ancestors or parents did. We are only responsible for our own actions. So when Allah says “yours is what you have earned,” it could be interpreted as Allah saying, “look, you could die at any time, and there is a beautiful return for you ahead if you are good. But if you die now, and you haven’t earned your keep, you don’t get to give a down payment or a loan for your house in Jannah. You either paid for it, or not. It’s not yours if you don’t decide to live by your need for it to be yours in a way that is acceptable to your Lord.” That should motivate you, because it means you now know that it’s actually in your hands. It reminds you of your agency that comes with the responsibility of living a wakeful life. You are of sound mind, and you hold a heart in your chest and a soul within that is capable of bettering itself.
Recalling Allah’s words in verse 14 of Al-Imran, Allah’s mercy is starkly clear, bright and soothing like sunlight on a breezy, cloudy summer’s day. Allah is reminding us of the obvious: we want things from life. We want enjoyment, peace and even excitement. We want to experience beauty, and feel strong and look good. We want to possess the best items and the most wonderful, blooming relationships. Men want wives and fancy modes of transport, women want husbands and all the world has to offer. Allah is reminding us that He created us, so yes, He knows. It is because of His decisions that we are that way! This is comforting and so freeing because it means He understands our need to be happy and how happy we can be even more than we do. He has shown us the way, and we’ll never run out of goodness because his grace and generosity is infinite and perfect in the time, and the nature of His blessings.
3:14. Beautified for people is the love of that which they desire – of women and sons, heaped-up sums of gold and silver, fine branded horses, and cattle and tilled land. That is the enjoyment of worldly life, but Allah has with Him the best return.
—Quran, Surah Al-Imran
When you maintain hope that Allah will generously reward you, it gets easier to abstain or moderate when required. When you know that you have a responsibility towards your own joyful afterlife and that there’s only one way to achieve it, your heart will grow fixated on your goal and it will get easier and you will start to enjoy the hard times. Not because they are easy, but because of the knowledge that there is something better beyond with your patience being rewarded and a close relationship with the most compassionate, beautiful and healing Being that is with you.