Until we see ourselves as the United States of America, we can’t heal

In April 1970 as the Apollo 13 spacecraft hurtled toward the moon, an oxygen tank exploded.

Mission Commander Jim Lovell famously radioed to Earth, “Houston, we’ve got a problem.”

The explosion compromised the structural integrity of the ship and shut down many of its vital systems. The astronauts’ lives hung in the balance. Failure was not an option.

Men and women at NASA rallied together, used what they had at hand to fashion a solution and brought the crew home. Safe.

Until we start seeing ourselves as the United States of America, we are going to see suspicion, animosity and violence continue to engulf our nation.

Well, now as then… we’ve got a problem.

And now as then… failure is not an option.

Deaths in Dallas, Baton Rouge and beyond. Riots across the country. A recent New York Post front page headlined summarized it in one word: “Fury.”

Everywhere we turn we see the anger. We see the outrage. One community feels unfairly attacked. Another community feels unjustly besieged.

All too often responses to the anger and violence are weak and ineffectual from the White House right down to the houses on your block and my block.

What is the solution to America’s problem?

First, we must understand that this is, indeed, an American problem.

It is not a white problem.

It is not a black problem.

It is not a brown problem.

It is an American problem

Today, we are a divided nation. There is “us” and there is “them.”

But we are all Americans. What affects you affects me. What affects me affects you.

Until we start seeing ourselves as the United States of America, we are going to see suspicion, animosity and violence continue to engulf our nation.

In the Bible, Solomon said, “As a man thinketh, so is he.”

In an age of 24-hour news where every misstep by a police officer or every overreach by a protester cycles before our eyes again and again and again, it is all too easy to think division is now the order of things.

But it is not.

We as a people need to recognize we are all God’s children and are all equally loved by the creator. We also are all equally responsible to show each other the love we are shown. I am, you are, we are all, in fact, our brothers’ keepers.

There are people who want to see this country torn down. That is a simple fact. And if we do not start supporting each other, we give them the opportunity to do just that.

In the aftermath of the tragedy in Dallas, pastors from across the city came together to pray for love and unity.

Think what could happen if we saw that in every city in the country. Not just pastors, but every man, woman and child who desires unity and stability asking God for it.

There is awesome power in the force of united prayer. God himself said, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

We are a land in need of healing.

And we are a people blessed with a nation worth saving.

America, we’ve got a problem.

And the solution is coming together, seeing the person next to us as our equal and praying for God’s power to unite . . . as Americans.

David said it so well in the Psalms: “How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity . . . for there the Lord commanded the blessing.”

If we as a nation pray, God will bring us the peace, love for one another and stability we desire.

Let each one of us commit to that prayer today.

Failure is not an option.

John Hagee, is founder and senior pastor of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio and founder of Christians United for Israel. He produced the docudrama “Four Blood Moons” (click to watch the trailer here), based on his New York Times best-selling book.

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