Megillah leining in my shul was very long. Some bochurim were a little over-enthusiastic each time the name of our infamous foe, Haman, was recited. Some of the longer Hamans stretched out for a couple of minutes. Nonetheless, Megilla didn't take more than about forty five minutes.
Forty five minutes of reading, it's hard to see tough the Purim story was. Haman about to kill all the Jews? Don't worry, turn the page. But in reality, the story happened over the course of years. Esther sat in loneliness in the palace, not for a couple of pages, but for years. Year after year of sitting and wondering why Hashem had her there, agonizing years of enduring terrible hardships, but Esther didn't know about the neis that would happen in the end.
Now, on Purim, it's important for all of us to realize that we might be sitting in the darkness for years, not knowin when, not knowing why, just waiting, hoping. Just as in the story of Purim, the plan of Hashem will eventually be revealed, and "Revach v'hatzolah ya'amod."
And now, a question for Purim:
Why did Haman attempt to kill all of the Jews? Wasn't it only Mordechai that angered him?
The answer is, Haman knew that if he would only sentence Mordechai to death, his office would be flooded with calls, letters, emails and faxes from the rest of the Jews, requesting that he not kill Mordechai. ;-)
A freilichen Purim!