“The Dews from Heaven,” Ensign, June 2014, 70–71
What it is. Condensed water vapor on a cooled surface.
How it is formed. When air cools below the dew point (the temperature at which relative humidity reaches 100 percent), water molecules in the air cluster to form dewdrops on cool surfaces through condensation (changing from a gas to a liquid). Under certain conditions, drops also form in the air, creating a night mist.
When it occurs. Dew usually forms at night, when temperatures are falling.
What its effects are. Dew moistens and cools whatever it forms on. Because of this, it can help plants survive hot, dry summers. In the westernmost areas of the Holy Land, for instance, moist air from the sea causes large amounts of dew to form during the summer months, greatly benefiting crops.
In Hebrew, the word for dew and night mist is the same (tal).
Moses was the first prophet to teach that God’s word “shall distil as the dew” (Deuteronomy 32:2).
The manna that fed the children of Israel in the wilderness came with the dew (see Numbers 11:9).
The miraculously refreshing and reviving effect of dew upon the plants in the Holy Land prompted Isaiah to use it as a figure of resurrection (see Isaiah 26:19) and Hosea to use it as a figure of repentance (see Hosea 14:4–5).
Collects gradually. Though the Lord can flood our souls with revelation and inspiration at times, we are more likely to experience a gradual increase in understanding and testimony of His word throughout our lives.
Forms quietly and invisibly. A testimony of the truth is a gift from God. Because of this, it can seem miraculous to us. President Boyd K. Packer, President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, has said, “We become taller in our testimony like we grow in physical stature and hardly know it is happening, because it comes by growth” (“How Does the Spirit Speak to Us?” New Era, Feb. 2010, 3).
Helps keep plants alive in harsh conditions. We live in a world that is hostile to faith and testimony, but our Heavenly Father never leaves us to wither. When we allow God’s word to “distil upon [our souls],” we can be refreshed and kept alive spiritually, and we can then thrive, grow, and bring forth the fruits of faith—a change of heart, a love of God and our fellowmen, and good works.