One day I talked about the parable of when they asked Christ whether they should pay taxes and he held up a coin and said, “Render unto Caesar, etc.” My point was and still is that when we were flying in combat, we weren’t doing God’s work. We were doing Caesar’s work. So for us to go to prison and then ask God to get us out was not fair to God, to our religion, to our beliefs and to ourselves. It wasn’t a miracle that sent a SAM [surface-to-air missile] to hit my airplane. It was a guy, a technician at a SAM site.
I think it was important, a little bit for the stability factor, that it wasn’t God who was going to perform a miracle, end the war and bring us home. It was men. It was Caesar. I think the majority of those guys felt the way I did but we just had some, just as people turn to faith healing and that kind of stuff, we had some of that. A lot of times I would pray for strength and I think sometimes I got it. Pray for patience to get through the next minute when things were bad. I just don’t think it’s fair to expect too much out of what is basically not the Lord’s business.