The Leaf

The Psalmist wrote about the man who had a redeeming relationship with Jehovah. “He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of waters; his leaf also shall not wither (Psalm 1:3).”(B.C. 1021) A tree with an abundance of water, planted in good soil, and having the open sky for a canopy will be productive. Especially good are its leaves for they will not whither.

The purpose of leaves is to produce food and oxygen for all living things. Leaves come in many sizes and shapes and identify the kinds of tree upon which they grow. There are flat and wide leaves, spiky and thin, heart-shaped, and egg-shaped. The Magnolia and Dogwood have smooth edged leaves, while the Oak has lobed leaves. Black Oaks have pointed leaf tips, but the White Oak leaf has a rounded tip. Pine tree leaves are pointed and remain green all year. Fruit tree leaves are oval-shaped, but other leaves are elongated or bladelike in shape.

Fall brings about God’s finest art work because leaves turn different colors; why? Trees respond to the decreasing amount of sunlight by producing less and less chlorophyll. When that happens the pigments already in the leaves can finally show through and produce the bright rainbow of colors –red, orange, and yellow.

A tree is one of the Lord’s finest creations and the leaves on trees are the powerhouses of plants! Human life depends on oxygen! We breathe it in and exhale carbon dioxide. A leaf inhales carbon dioxide, then manufactures oxygen and profusely gives it to all. In South America their vast forests produce about 40% of the world’s oxygen.

This process is called photosynthesis, which takes place in the leaf. Plant cells use carbon dioxide and the energy of sunlight to make food. Plant cells must also remove the oxygen (a waste product for the plant) produced in photosynthesis. As this happens, the cells controlling the leaf open to allow oxygen to escape. It is mind-boggling to imagine how many leaves work together around the globe to provide oxygen for six billion humans not counting all other life.

The Psalmist spoke of the trees’ leaves not withering. To wither is to die, to not produce anymore. Chlorophyll no longer lives. The leaf exemplifies the servant of God who likewise is constantly producing good things for others. Jesus said that a good tree bears fruit. A Christian, like a tree and its leaves lets his/her light shine to lead others. Further, they do good things that bless in spite of the evil ones who kill steal and destroy. Let us be the Lord’s ‘leaves’ and help others.

Rev. Raymond Parnell is Pastor Emeritus of Christ Memorial Temple in Lafayette, Indiana.

photo credit: Pink Sherbet Photography via photopin cc

Enhanced by Zemanta

Tags: , , , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply