In Charles Schultz's famous Peanuts comic strip the little dog Snoopy is recalling the past. "I remember those summer evenings years ago at the Daisy Hill Puppy Farm. We used to sit around and sing while someone strummed a banjo."

After a long sigh Snoopy sits up and says, "Actually, that's not true. No one knew how to play the banjo and we didn't exactly sing. We just howled a lot!"

The cartoon brings to mind the old saying, "Things aren't the way they used to be -- and they never were!" Too many churches are living in the past; a past that memory has romanticized and that may never have been as great as we remember it. In any case, the past must always be the foundation upon which we build in the present for the sake of the future.