On Chanukah, G-d performed an obvious miracle. The oil lasted for eight times as long as it should have. On Passover, G-d blatantly reversed the order of nature with the ten plagues, the splitting of the sea, and the manna falling down from heaven. And when we received the Torah on Shavuot—G-d Himself spoke!
And then we have Purim.
A most enigmatic holiday.
And herein lies the secret to Purim.
Purim was not a miracle.
Say that again?
Purim was a story of seemingly ‘natural’ events.
🍾 Achashverosh got rid of his wife because she refused to comply with his arrogant command.
🍾 Haman plotted to kill all the Jews, and the king agreed without a second thought.
🍾 The king chose Esther (whose name means hidden) as his new queen, and she adamantly refused to divulge her identity.
🍾 When the Jews knew they were in danger, Esther asked them to fast and repent. She then won the king’s favor, disclosed her Jewishness and asked him to save her nation.
🍾 Outraged at the decree against his queen, the king had Haman hung, and allowed the Jews to take revenge on their would-be killers.
🍾 Mordechai, Esther’s uncle, was appointed as prime minister instead of Haman.
People. Events. Places.
G-d wove them together seamlessly to result in a miraculously wonderful outcome.
Where was G-d in the Purim story?
G-d’s name is not mentioned in the Megillah. He was hiding behind the curtain, moving the puppets around the theater.
And so we masquerade on Purim. To show that sometimes, there’s more than meets the eye.
Maybe this explains the giddy exhilaration that we experience on Purim.
We, the exile Jews, are living in times where G-d is not center stage for all to see.
Like in the Purim story, we all experience our share of darkness.
Because G-d, so to speak, is behind the curtain.
Purim reminds us that even when we aren’t experiencing open miracles, there is Someone behind the scenes, arranging events for an unfathomably amazing outcome.
Now, isn’t this enough of a reason to dance?
But that’s not all. There are more goodies hidden inside Purim.
Beneath all the merrymaking, masked by rowdy celebration, there is a potent power of prayer.
On Purim we say;
But in a deeper sense, this phrase applies to us and G-d.
We stretch out our hand, and G-d answers us—without checking the balance in our spiritual bank accounts.
Purim. We give to others, without questions. G-d listens to our prayers, without questions.
Do your mitzvah of Matanot L’evyonim in the best and simplest way. Donate now, and your money will go to a needy family in Israel on Purim day.