First Baptist Church of Petit Jean
“Come to the Mountain for His Word”

June 2022

Wow! It is hard to believe we are two years away from being locked down by COVID19. Every
few days, weeks or months, it seems like we are closer to getting back to normal, then a new
challenge pops up and we are not even sure what that looks like anymore. Sometimes it even
seems that someone or something does not want things to run on an even keel.
Since the pandemic we have had marriages and even a new Great-granddaughter approaching
her ‘two’s’ and the opportunities that will bring. Looking back fifty years ago in the month of
May I met Reta and life has never been ‘normal’ again, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
The month of June is the official start of Reta’s retirement. When the new year came and we
were making plans for this, June seemed a long way off. Like the past fifty years, time flew
while we were having fun. Every section of our lives can be divided into ‘seasons’ that GOD has
brought us to and will bring us through. The apostle Paul in Romans 8:28 reminds us that, “we
know all things work together for good to those who love GOD and are called according to HIS
purpose.” One thing we can be sure of is that December also will be here probably before we
know it.
Bro. Bill Scroggs


We Lift Up In Prayer
Phyllis Adams, Wayne Adams, Barry Carter, Amanda Falls, Agatha Gasaway, Gwyn Gasaway,
Kay George, Chester Head, Lawrence and JD Henley, E.Kaye Jones, Mary Pruitt, Gloria Renfroe,
Kenneth & Ellen Robertson, Jeanie Scroggs, Bro. Bill and Reta Scroggs, Jay Scroggs, Loren Silva,
Smiley Family, Steinmetz Family, Lillian Tousley, Billy Vance, Patti Vance, Harley West,
Unspoken requests, Missionaries, Military & Law Enforcement, State and National Leaders
and The USA.

Our Prayer
Dear Lord, it seems like our prayer concerns continue to grow and grow. We know You are a big and all
powerful God, and that You can meet each of these needs. Thank you, Lord, for Your mercy, grace, and
loving-kindness. Please be with each of these, our friends and family, as they struggle with their different

illnesses and problems. We ask an extra measure of blessing for each of them. In Jesus’ precious name
we pray, Amen

Happy Birthday!
June 10 Anna Cody 
June 18 Wanda Owen 
June 20 Bro. Bill Scroggs 
June 21 Linda Jones
June 29 Sharon Steinmetz


Happy Anniversary

June 11 Nolen & Wanda Owen

June 21 Bill & Coe Wilson

June 26 Doug & Jeanie Scroggs

Changes Coming To FBCPJ

As you arrived at church yesterday or today, you must have noticed the beginning of
our new expanded parking lot. This space will provide us with more than twice the
space we currently have. A new drive will also provide you with a way to exit the
parking lot without passing right next to the crowded side door. It is all going to be nice
and a step forward for our church.

Our Congratulations To Reta

Thanks to the encouragement of many of our educators at First Baptist Church Petit Jean,
Reta is hanging up her whistle and lanyard. Even this week she has ‘temporarily’ lost her
Her career began actually in 1972 when she met and tried to teach me. While she wanted to
become a teacher following into the footsteps of an Aunt and Uncle that she admired, she
became distracted because of finances going to Business College. After our girls were born
Reta raised them as well as a gaggle of neighborhood and church kids. She taught Suday
School and Mission classes as well as Children’s Choir at church and community Children’s
Her work with the Community choir led to her first long term substitute position which
opened other opportunities. Another long term choir substitution opened the door for Reta
to go into child-care for the choir teacher as well as Courtney. The choir teacher had
another child and another on the way and I encouraged Reta to take a Pre-K position at
Southside Batesville so she could get a break sometimes.
When we moved to Conway Reta started working at the Head-start Program and as time
went on she was able to get a position with the Conway ABC Pre-K program in 2006. She
has enjoyed her career impacting not only 3–5-year old’s, but the parents and new teachers
and other educators that have come across her path.
 Reta has a couple of books she has written and will be working on getting them published.
She will surely miss the students, but will still have her hands full working on the first
project she started… Me.

Bro. Bill Scroggs


First Baptist Church of Petit Jean

“Come to the Mountain for His Word”

May, 2022


You Might Need An Umbrella

For the past two months you could almost rubber stamp that prediction. You also could add to that several days, a jacket could be handy. Now moving into May, guess what? Rain is forecasted for at least six of the next seven days. If the March and April showers are any indication of our May flowers this ought to be a bumper year. Fortunately, the temperatures have warmed up and we can only hope for a few weeks of nice weather before our summer scorchers settle in.

All of the storms on our horizon can’t be fended off with boots, slickers and umbrellas. We are entering the primary season of our politics and there is so much hot air being expended it could lead to a long dry spell. There is so much lying, confusion, deceit, sin and downright orneriness, we had better get prepared.

The answer to our current situation is found in 2 Chronicles 7:14, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and forgive their sin and heal their land.”

God help us to listen and become obedient to YOU.

Bro. Bill Scroggs



For the next few Sundays Doug Scroggs will be making or remaking pictures for a new Church Directory.  If you prefer, your picture in the current directory can be used again.  We request that each family (members, and frequent guests) have a picture in the new directory.  We consider all of you a part of our church family.  Pictures will be made in the Fellowship Hall on Sunday mornings from 9 to 9:30 and after church.  If this time frame does not work for you, other arrangements can be made.  See Doug.                      


First Baptist Church of Petit Jean

“Come to the Mountain for His Word”


March 2022


Pray, Pray, Pray

As we finish Ann Vance’s Birthday month, we watch her and her sister by another mother EK, each welcome a great grand to compound next year’s celebration.  We had two ice, snow, sleet and freezing rain events. The month ended with Russia attacking the Ukraine and shook up the world as if our country needed one more thing in addition to inflation and other uncertainties.

Our friend, Phil Chapman, joined the heavenly chorus on Wednesday the 23rd. Each of us probably has at least one favorite “Phil story” and most likely half involve him being a challenge to Miss Linda.  I loved singing in the choir with Phil. At one time he was 50% of the men’s section. When we got to playing too big Miss Linda would look at us with her ‘School Marm’ look and Phil would peer over his glasses and say, “I love you, Linda!”  That would melt her heart but, he knew he had better straighten up (at least for a minute.) We didn’t need to lose another good man, but we were blessed to know him. Thank you, Miss Linda, for sharing Phil with us.

Pray for Wayne as he continues to wait, to wait, to wait…  Pray for these new babies brought into the world for a time such as this. Pray for those dealing with the ice and the effects of it. Pray for the citizens of Ukraine and the world as this moment of confusion is all around us. Pray for Miss Linda and their family and friends during this time of loss.

Remember to pray as Jesus did in Matthew 6:10, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Wouldn’t that be terrific?

Bro. Bill Scroggs


Visionary Meeting

February 20, 2022

 A Visionary Meeting of First Baptist Church of Petit Jean was held at 5 o’clock on February 20 , 2022.  This was a follow-up of the January 23, 2022 meeting. The following 19 members were present:  Bro. Bill & Reta Scroggs, Bob & Anna Cody, Nolen & Wanda Owen, Jeanie Scroggs, E.Kaye Jones, Ann Vance, Clayton & Linda Jones, Bill & Coe Wilson, Gwyn, Greg, & Agatha Gasaway, Shawana & Daniel Weatherly and Bubba Vance.  The meeting was opened with prayer worded by Nolen Owen.   

Bro. Bill went over and explained the items on the list with little or no discussion.  The group settled on three topics for consideration at this time.  Improving the sound system was a high priority for a large number of people.  Daniel Weatherly will work on this project to include modern technology in all areas including help for the hearing impaired.  He will call on a professional to evaluate our facility for better sound quality and have the proper equipment installed.  This project may include audio and visual set up in the fellowship hall and classrooms.

Interest was shown in the topic for an electronic sign to be installed in front of the church.  Anna Cody will lead this project with several volunteering to help her. 

The third project for consideration is to increase our parking space.  Bro. Bill asked the men “to put their heads together” to come up with a workable plan.  This would include land West of the existing parking lot or land North of our church building.  If this requires the parsonage to be moved, make a decision on where.

The meeting ended with the reading of a Bible verse by Bro. Bill and prayer. 


First Baptist Church of Petit Jean

“Come to the Mountain for His Word”

February 2022


How Do You…

How do you celebrate life?  Life is not just celebrated by the years you have lived, but by the life you have put into your years.  Ann Vance likes to begin her celebration on the first day of her birthday month, if possible, a few days early.  She crams more life into a day than many folks put in a week or month.  Since her birth date is the first, she gets a head start.  

My mother was born on Ground Hog Day and as we would ask her if she had seen her shadow, she would always say, “I didn’t look”.  Mom loved life and was grateful for the five years GOD gave her after she found out she had liver cancer.  The writer of Psalm 90:10 tells us, “The days of our years are threescore and ten, and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years.”  In her last few months, she expressed how she had a good life and was glad to celebrate her 81st birthday.  We even laughed about it being her “Mighty First” birthday. 

Now Dad who will be 91 on the 13th of February will be commemorating the day by trying to figure out how we can get the garden tilled so we can get certain crops in the ground.  I think the key in life is to enjoy each day in our own way, celebrating and rejoicing in each day.  “Let everything that hath breathe rejoice praise the LORD.  Praise the LORD. (Psalm 150:6)                                                                                                                                               

Bro. Bill Scroggs



First Baptist Church of Petit Jean

“Come to the Mountain for His Word”

January 2022

Where Does This Road Go?

The other day I was turning onto a familiar road and instead of the normal sign, it said ‘555.’ Now as I have been on 67 and 167, I am afraid one day when giving directions I might use one of the previous designations to the same place and some folks might think I have lost my mind.  The truth is when asked where does highway 555 go I could correctly respond the same place highway 67 did.  

As we look down the highway of 2022 there is a lot of uncertainty that we will be facing.  However, no matter how many twists and turns we find we can be sure GOD has our best interests at heart.  Jeremiah 29:11 reminds us, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares The LORD. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and future.”

Whatever direction this year takes us, we can be assured that we are not alone.

 Bro. Bill Scroggs


What is Faith?

Faith is one of those words that is commonly used but not always understood. Some of that confusion comes from the many different ways the word faith is used in everyday conversation; a quick look at shows seven different uses! One common way that people use the word faith is to refer to belief in something despite lacking any evidence for it. But is that what the Bible means by faith? The answer is a resounding no! So, when the Bible uses the word faith, what does it mean?

The closest that the Bible comes to offering an exact definition is Hebrews 11:1: “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” From this particular passage, we see that the central feature of faith—confidence or trust. In the Bible, the object of faith is God and his promises. A clear example of this is Abram’s encounter with God in Genesis 15. In response to God’s promise of countless descendants, Abram “believed the LORD, and he counted it to him as righteousness” (Gen 15:6). Commenting on this, the Apostle Paul writes, “No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised” (Romans 4:20-21). Thus, faith means putting your trust in God and having confidence that he will fulfill his promises.