Meet Sarah!

I started coming to Blackhawk about 5 years ago after a coworker who was new in town asked me about local churches. Since then I have transitioned jobs and come on staff at Blackhawk as part of our Operations Team. Almost a year ago I had this amazing day filled with laughter, skateboards, a monkey, and vows where I got to marry my best friend! (Ask me about the skateboards, or monkey, sometime.) Since this life change, I have been feeling a pull to serve in a more deliberate way. Hearing about the rebuild team, it sounded like the perfect opportunity to do just that!
I am excited to be going on my first “adult” serving trip! (I’ve gone with our middle school team to Alaska as well as some other trips while in college.) I’m also looking forward to learning more about the basics of construction and disaster rebuild efforts.

Meet Dan & Heather!

As we travel south, the air changes its scent…to my favorite food, BBQ. Yeehaw! Hey y’all! I’m Dan Watts from Pine Bluff, WI. I am a self employed woodworker and hope to share my skills with the team while in Texas. I have been married to Heather (also on the team) for 30+ years. We have 2 daughters – Jessica is 29 and lives in NC and Megan is 23 and lives in Madison. We have been going to Blackhawk Church for 13 or so years. Heather is happily employed at Blackhawk.
We are excited to be joining this team on this mission trip. Heather and I have been on many trips with our youth over the years. We decided to finally try an adult trip after praying and talking.
Random Fact: This will be my (Dan) 9th mission trip. Thanks for your prayers and support.

Meet Gary!

My wife, Janet, and I have been married for 41 years. We’ve been attending Blackhawk since 1994. Since 2014 I have transitioned my world from a career in health care to a new season of helping. This has involved everyone from family and friends to those who I became exposed to who had a need. This new season has involved helping with Habitat for Humanity, assisting in last years flood relief, to simply providing a ride for someone with a last minute need. Last year after Harvey I had applied with 5 agencies to go to Houston as a volunteer but was rejected due to the limited time frame that I had available to offer. So here I am fulfilling that opportunity from a year ago!
Random fact: I’m addicted to Suzy-Q’s not Ho-Ho’s not Ding Dong’s but Suzy-Q’s! But they are not as easy to find anymore.

Meet Laura!

My name is Laura. I am retired after working many years as a Special Ed. teacher. My husband, Bob, and I have 2 grown children and 1 grandchild. I have been attending Blackhawk for about 15 years and have been involved with One-to-One ministry on and off for the duration of that time. I am excited to make this trip with Samaritan’s Purse. I have had a passion to help those in need for a long time. I am excited to see God at work as He brings people together to respond to a crisis.

Texas Go Team: April 2019

Thanks for checking out the Disaster Rebuild GO Team blog! This Saturday, April 6, 2019 we are sending a team Pearland, Texas to assist in rebuild efforts through Samaritan’s Purse. Our team of 9 will be working in partnership with the local community, Samaritan’s Purse and a homeowner on a home rebuild.
Please keep the team in your prayers and keep checking back for daily updates on the team!

God is Great

Well today concluded our Mission trip in Pearland, Texas and it was a great week of serving and fellowship with other Christ followers.  We met some incredible other people of God’s kingdom and were able to help a home owner get closer to getting back into her newly rebuilt home.  Where we started on Monday to the progress we made on Friday was truly amazing and we praise God. 

We were blessed to see the home owner and “little Willy” one final time and get a picture with them in front of their home.  We were also blessed to learn some new skills and witness how God is using us and many more of his followers to impact the Houston area community.

We ask for prayers on our final journey back to Madison and continued prayers for the Houston area as many people are still recovering from Hurricane Harvey.

Finally, we thank everyone who has supported us and our families before and during this trip and appreciate all the positive comments on the blog throughout the week.  It was great reading them throughout the week to keep us going.

If you subscribed to the blog stay tuned because we are going to stay in contact with the site coordinator and try to get some pictures of the house all finished in the next couple weeks.

Go Team Texas – Brad, CJ, Jon, Paul, and Scott

Thoughts and Shout Outs!!!

As I reflect on the week I wanted to share a few experiences and take the time to give a few shout outs to a few people.

Experiences

  • We haven’t interacted with our homeowner much this week but the interactions we have had have been great.  I can’t share her personal story with you through this medium but trust me when I say to you that she is one strong woman that has gone through some struggles recently.  It has been awesome to know that we are able to tangibly do something to help her move back into her home.  It is awesome to be there in the finishing stages.  If you know construction much we are in the phases that you see at the end of the day.  It may be tedious and “slow” but this is what she will come home to every day and see.
  • The people in the neighborhood have been very friendly towards us but you can see there are probably people that live on the same street that are still in the rebuilding phase from after the Hurricane.  We have had several people approach us and ask how they could also receive help.  We have also experienced some generosity from the community which is also such a great blessing
  • We are volunteering with a large group of men from Pennsylvania.  It is amazing to see how well they all get along and work together.  We have heard some amazing stories of how God has been moving in their lives and it is refreshing to see such a large group of men so committed to their walks with Christ.

Shout Outs

  • I want to say thanks to my team Scott, Paul, CJ and Jon.  This is an awesome group of guys that are willing to do anything they are asked to do.  As I watch them all work together it is just an awesome experience to witness.
  • A special thanks to Scott for updating the blog.  Even though it looks like these posts came from me he was really the one writing the posts behind the scenes
  • A special thanks to my wife Melissa.  It isn’t just me that is on this trip.  It is both of us that are committed to me taking teams to respond to the calling I’ve had put on my heart.  Without her encouragement and strength I wouldn’t have begun working with Samaritan’s Purse just a few years ago.
  • I want to say thanks to our wives (Kate, Heidi, Blair, Melissa and Rachel).  Sorry if I misspelt any names.  Thanks for allowing your husbands to go on this trip.  I know how hard it can be to juggle all of the activities and responsibilities without your spouse at home.  I truly appreciate you doing this for your husbands this week.
  • I want to say thanks to the impact staff at Blackhawk (Susan and Maddie) and whoever else was involved with taking a chance on me for this trip.  It is humbling to call myself a team lead and to be responsible for something like this.  The staff at Blackhawk put structure around this process that made the planning and execution of this trip so much easier.
  • Lastly I wanted to say thanks to all the people that have written comments on our page, provided financial assistance and most of all are praying for us.  Your comments are encouraging to us and the prayers are felt and appreciated.

Finishing Touches

Today marked our final full day  here in Pearland, Texas and it is amazing to see how much progress we have made in the home since arriving there Monday morning.  We continued our progress with baseboard trim, tile work, and other little details.  Brad, CJ and Paul are official baseboard and quarter round trim masters while Jon and Scott are official tile masters.  We have definitely gained experience in things we can utilize in future mission trips.

We got another visit from Willy, the homeowner’s son, and he brought one of his friends along, Garrett.  Willy had been sharing the story his mom has been going through with Samaritan’s Purse and wanted Garrett to witness it for himself.  It was another reminder that the work we are doing stretches beyond just the homeowner.

As we approach our final day on working, we ask for continued prayers for safety while working tomorrow and safe travels back home.  We also ask for prayers for our families back home as they finish up holding the house down while we have been here in Texas.

Thanks for all the support and prayers throughout the week and we hope you have enjoyed our daily updates.  We will share a final update tomorrow and hope you enjoy some more pictures of today’s work!!!

Go Team Texas – Brad, CJ, Jon, Paul, and Scott

The gentleman in the middle is the homeowner’s son and the gentleman on the far right is a long time friend of his

Half Way

Today marked the half way point of our Mission work and the progress at the home we are serving at is really starting to show.  The other part of our team of men from Pennsylvania got put with another team lead that returned back to the site today, which just left us and our team lead Mark.  It was a great day of tile work and lots of baseboard trim. 

Later in the morning hours, Willy, the homeowner’s son stopped by and it was great getting to meet and chat with him.  Our team lead Mark told us earlier in the week that he was “a little guy” in joking way, so getting to meet Willy made that come to life.  Willy had a heart bigger than he was and it was great having him be able to see the continued transformation of his mother’s home.

We got a bit of relief from the heat and humidity after lunch as a storm passed through the area we were in, but that didn’t slow our progress down.  As the sun returned after the storm passed through, we had one of the neighbors stop by with three pies for us.  They wanted to show their appreciation as they have noticed how hard we had been working.  It is in those moments that we are reminded that the work and ministry we are a part of goes beyond just the home owners we are in direct contact with.  We aren’t showing the light of Jesus Christ for those impacted by just that home, but everyone else in the direct community and greater Houston community.

We appreciate the continued prayers and responses on the blog and ask that you continue those prayers as we finish the week up. 

Go Team Texas – Brad, CJ, Jon, Paul, and Scott

[Sorry no pictures today.  We were too busy.  We’ll get you some tomorrow]

Nice to Meet You

Today marked our second day on the job site which meant continuing the work we started on day 1 and even beginning some new tasks.  Brad, CJ, and Paul did a great job finishing hanging and setting kitchen cabinets and are now at professional status for cabinetry.  Jon and Scott began working on baseboard trim while fighting the heat and humidity while outside cutting. 

After lunch we had the pleasure of getting to meet the home owner who stopped by as she always tries to do each week as new volunteers come through to work on her home.  It was a true blessing to get to hear her story and learn a little bit about her.  She is in great spirits and extremely grateful for the work Samaritan’s Purse is doing to help her get back into her home.  It is moments like this where you take a step back to be thankful for all God has done and provided for us.  We ask you to keep this homeowner and all those who will continue to work on her home in your prayers.

With only half of the trip left, we also ask for continued prayers for safe travels to and from the site, safety while on the site, and positive spirits as we all continue taking on new and unfamiliar tasks.  We would like to thank everyone who has continued to pray for us and we truly appreciate all the responses on the blog as the words of encouragement keep us going as we get closer to the end of our trip.

Go Team Texas – Brad, CJ, Jon, Paul, and Scott