An advent reflection on the viral image of Omran Daqneesh, a dazed five-year-old boy found in the rubble in Aleppo, Syria.
Light land, hope illumined enthuses the refugee soul.
Forgotten spaces at highway's end host sojourners cast out of home.
Aleppo's child amid bomb-spawned rocks and ramble, bleeds; yet lives.
Holy writ speaks unworldly absurdities of words picturing conversion;
Swords turned to plows and spears into pruning shears, of war colleges shuttered and the weary at rest.
O Babylon, O Babylon, sounding of hope and a future out of desperate straits.
Oh Bethlehem, sweet Bethlehem, after long night, a light called hope cradled in Nativity's embrace.
Bethlehem's child mocked and bruised, bleeds and dies, yet lives.
And so, hope lives.
James Preston originally wrote this Advent reflection for First Baptist Church in Jefferson City, Mo. It is used here with permission.