In the shadow of His wings

A few weeks ago the picture that kept coming to my mind is of the Altar, the Ark that David made a tent for. The Ark representing the very presence of the Lord. What comes to mind is a Psalm.

Psalm 17:6-9:

6 “I call on You, O God,for You will answer me.Incline Your ear to me; hear my words. Show the wonders of Your loving devotion,You who save by Your right handthose who seek refuge from their foes. Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me in the shadow of Your wings. from the wicked who assail me, from my mortal enemies who surround me.

In thinking about this, I remember that David did not have a temple yet, although he wanted to build God a house, he did not get to build it. So he pitched a tent for the Ark.

2 Samuel 6:17

17So they brought the ark of the LORD and set it in its place inside the tent that David had pitched for it. Then David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD.

A tent for the Ark of the covenant, the presence of God was in a tent and David would go frequently to only bring his worship but also often to ask for direction and thus ‘inquire’ of the Lord whenever he was facing hardships. He would seek His direction on what to do.

I am sure David did not only inquire of the Lord or worshipped Him there, but would also find refuge there. Especially as a leader, he probably needed a place to run to. How otherwise would he write and tell God to hide him in the shadow of His wings.

We need this refuge today. We don’t know what to do in the face of this crisis. Our leaders need our prayers for wise decision making, but more than anything we need wisdom and direction and refuge.

I love using my imagination and picturing the rays of sun shining through and perphaps the wings of the cherubim would cast a shadow on the ground and David could actually literally find ‘shelter’ in the shadow of those wings.

However you would like to picture those words, for me it is comforting to know that those wings are His very presence. He wants us to run to His presence. Especially in the time in which we live. I want to run there don’t you. Some of us need a physical place to run to, but do you know we can run to Him in our words, our expression, our ‘prayers’.

This is not the time to come up with opinions on how we think our leaders should do better in protecting us from this virus. This is the time to run to the presence of God, to ‘inquire’ of the Lord. To sit still, to listen, to hide in the shadow of His wings.

So many have brought up Psalm 91 and why not. It is a beautiful reminder of where we are allowed to run. A beautiful reminder of a promise. That is what we do when we find ourselves in times of trouble, in times of hardship. We remind ourselves of what was said, what was promised adn Psalm 91:4 brings it beautifully.

Psalm 91:4

4He will cover you with His feathers; under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and rampart.

How amazing is that. He will cover you with His feathers, under His wings you will find refuge. Here it talks about how God is a protector of His people. His faithfulness (which is who He is) will be a shield and rampart. A rampart is like a walled city surround the city to protect it. This is what the faithfulness of the Lord does for those who believe in Him, fear Him and follow His ways.

Friend, in the midst of this very grim looking situation we are facing in the world today. This virus that seems to go after us like an enemy. Let us be more like David. Let us inquire of the Lord, let us ask Him for His insight, let us hide in the shadow of His wings. Let us find refuge under His wings, refuge and protection in His faithfulness.

How?

Rehearse how God has been faithful to you. How has He shown you His faithfulness?

“But You O Lord, sit enthroned forever; your renown endures through all generation.” (Psalm 102:12)

“But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear Him, and His righteousness with their children’s children – with those who keep His covenant and remember to obey His precepts.” (Psalm 103:18)

“The Lord has established his throne in heaven and his kingdom rules over all. Praise the  Lord, you his angel, you might ones, who do his bidding, who obey his word. Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts, you his servants who do his will. Praise the Lord, all his works everywhere in his dominion. Praise the Lord, O my soul.” (Psalm 103:19-22)

Psalm 103 starts out with David expressing His praise to the Lord with his whole heart and soul. He is understood that we could never give enough praise and worship to the Lord.

“Praise the Lord, O my soul and forget not all his benefits.” (Psalm 103:2)

I don’t know about you, but these days I find myself longing to run to the Altar, the presence of the Lord, to find refuge. Not in fear, but in my need for Him, my need for His view on things, my need for greater understanding, greater peace. I believe that it can only be found in Him, Jesus in me the hope of glory. I am going to join with David in saying:

“Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being praise His Holy Name.”

My Peace I give to you

We write to you, our friends and family who are just like all of us going through interesting times. Amazing how things can rapidly change and how, what you used to do, all of a sudden goes to the back burner and the concern for your family and those around you becomes top priority.

Here in YWAM San Jose and our immediate family we have experienced a great working together as a ministry and leaders to make all the necessary preparations to face the situation that our world is walking through.

Writing of protocols, walking our community through safety procedures and guidelines of the ministry of health took quite a bit of energy.

At this moment we have suspended all our activities, we stay in our houses or rooms and we have entered into a season of ‘seeking, praying, interceding, worshipping and resting.’

As we released our students to be with their families at this time we were able to close this season with them and God reminded me of these wonderful words of Jesus in John 14:27.

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As I read these words I was reminded of the disciples being somewhat distraught about the fact that Jesus was leaving. They weren’t really ready for that at all, but it was necessary. But like a normal greeting at that time they would wish each other ‘Shalom’, which is more  than just a ‘peace of mind’. True Shalom refers to an inner sense of completeness and wholeness, it has to do with the entire being, not just that you are at ‘ease’. A great article on the subject if you are interested in further study is here https://fullerstudio.fuller.edu/shalom-as-wholeness-embracing-the-broad-biblical-message/

As I shared with our ‘departing’ students, they weren’t expecting their journey to be cut short so abruptly, neither did we. This virus has caused so many ‘unexpected’ moments for so many around the world, but this is exactly what Jesus was leaving with His disciples. The peace that we need in times where things would be difficult, hard, challenging, unexpected. The kind of peace that would settle things in our inner being, a completeness, wholeness that the things that happen around us can not touch or take away.

Not just the work of Jesus on the cross, the inheritance He left us to purchased by his blood but He gives us Himself. He says “MY” peace I give to “YOU”. He gives us Himself. He himself is OUR peace. Not just what He did for us and the gift of salvation brings us peace, but He Himself, His presence within us, through His Holy Spirit, brings us this completeness and wholeness in the midst of chaos.

As a family we are at ‘peace’ about where we are, where we live and what we are doing. We know that God has called us to raise up a generation, right here in Costa Rica, to not just know God, but to walk intimately with this Jesus, who is Himself peace.

Though things around us are challenging, they take our energy, they call for us to trust in His grace, that He gives generously when needed the most, which is now. We are experiencing His grace.

Our kids are experiencing school through a virtual platform, we are experiencing a new way to be a community as we are all ‘separated’, but internet makes it possible to stay ‘connected’. We are calling our leaders and community into a time of deep prayer and seeking God for what is to come. Will you join us?

In the mean time we have progressed in another step with the building and sooner than later we will be able to host hundreds of people yet again to come together to seek His face, to worship ‘together’, but in the mean time we will worship him together while apart. Praise the Lord He is not contained to a building, He lives within us, His people, now that is powerful! A personal God, who has given us Himself, His peace.

In such uncertain times we know we have one certainty and that is that He is Lord, He is seated on the throne and He has not changed. He has not stopped knowing what to do, how to speak to us.

 

The world can not give the way He gives, it can not provide us with the happiness, the way He gives it, neither can the troubles of this world take it away. So receive the gift of peace that Jesus has and listen to his words: “Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

Shalom to you and your loved ones

 

 

Writers needed

In July 2019 we officially started the first Bi-lingual school of writing here in San Jose, Costa Rica.

The vision is to be a place where young and old can come and learn in the area of their passion and calling. Be equipped for what the Lord is calling them to do.

Being a University of the Nations campus allows us to do this.

Building our own campus will give us the ability to equip more people, house them with us and send them out into the place God calls them.

One of them is this area of writing. We need a new generation of writers, those who will write about the truth, address issues based on a Biblical Worldview and follow the Holy Spirit as they write.

Some of the topics will be:

So if you have completed a Discipleship Training School with YWAM and have a passion and call for writing then this is your opportunity to come for 3 months and be equipped.

We will also offer some of the weeks of class to those who can only take a few hours of classes as we want to equip as many as possible.

Write is today: escueladeescritores@ywamsj.org

New partners needed

A new year calls for new strategies and new partners. Over the past 22 years we have seen God bring amazing people alongside our family and ministry for which we are extremely grateful.

In moments when we least expected it, the Lord brought people who carried us,  gave sacrificially and generously to support our family and especially our children.

Being a family of 5 with growing teens, expenses also tend to grow. Clothing or shoes all of a sudden don’t fit, school needs, bigger appetites, physical needs of ‘almost’ young adults are growing every day as well.

Not to mention that our oldest two are planning their own missionary adventures in the past year and for the year to come.

For all this to keep moving forward we are in need of new financial partners who want to come alongside our family on a monthly basis.  We need you.  We are looking for people who want to support our family with a monthly gift of either $25, $50, $75, $100 or any amount of your choice.

We are needing at least $1500 covered per month for all our family needs. Would you. consider being one of those partners for 2020 and 2021.

Maybe you are more interested in supporting one specific need for our family.  These are the ones you can help us with:

  1.  $1000 for Luca to do a summer ywam missionary program called SST (July 2020)
  2. $10.000 towards a better vehicle.  (We already have $9000 raised)
  3. Airmiles or funds toward tickets for our family to be with Marjolein’s family and our church family in Netherlands this Christmas 2020 (we have not been as a family since 2012)

Want to sign up as a monthly giver,  these are the ways to do that  (tax-deductible for you):

Methods of Giving:

1. Checks – Please send checks to the offices in the USA.

Pay to the Order of:  YWAM-Costa Rica

Mail to: Youth With A Mission Costa Rica, PO Box 603,  Bentonville, AR 72712

Memo or separate note enclosed: CG100

2. ONLINE Creditcard donation

Follow this link for online credit card donations: (FILL OUT OUR CODE CG100) https://ywamsj.formstack.com/forms/donations

Fees

There is a 3% processing fee for all donations that are processed through YWAM Costa Rica. 

THANK YOU FOR CONSIDERING PARTNERING WITH US IN

MOBILIZING – EQUIPPING – SENDING A NEW GENERATION

INTO MISSIONS TO SPREAD THE GOSPEL MESSAGE.

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Help Tessa get a bed

This little one turned 10 in July and is in need of another sleeping solution that gives us also space for a desk.

We want to get her one made and were not able to do this for her birthday but want to ask you to help out in providing this for her. This will help their room be more organized and spacious.

If you want to help get Tessa a bed you can click here for more info on how to give towards this need!

Designs are ready….

Yes, this is getting real exciting as designs are being shaped and finished for our very first building.

God is moving and bringing us not only people to come and serve, but those with the skills to do the designs for our buildings, the help needed with all the permit processes and making sure we follow all the established guidelines but the local government.

Pray with us our construction permits will come through soon so that we can see buildings go up such as this one!!!

How exciting is that!!!

Adventures with teens

July 14th 2019 was the day that we no longer had any children under the age of 10. We officially have only ‘teens’. Although our little Miss Tessa only turned 10, it is quite a milestone for the Coghi clan.

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Tessa, Luca & Gioela (10, 14 & 16)

We are so proud of our three kids and so grateful for the gift they are to our family. They are keeping us busy and on our toes and teach us every day what it means to parent in a multi cultural, multi lingual family!!!

God provided for Luca to attend the SST in Tyler, Texas. A missions and training program for teens between the ages of 13-17. Gioela was not able to attend this year due to much work at school, but Luca is enjoying himself as we have not heard much so we like to say “no news, good news, he is having fun”. This photo taken by SST staff proofs it:

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photo credit: SST International

Gioela (our 16 year old) started picking up ballet two months ago. Something she has been wanting to do for a while now and we finally decided that this was something she would really enjoy. Well on July 19th with her dance school she formed part of the first performance and it was so beautiful, it made us both cry. She is growing up really fast and it is beautiful to see how much she enjoys this. Here a little photo glimpse of that time:

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Dancing a snowflake dance

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Fun dance

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Grandma and grandpa were able to enjoy the performance also

Our little Tessa had a week long birthday as we were all here and there and is now officially enter into her teen years. Time is going by to quickly, but we are enjoying every stage.

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The celebrations have come to an end. This weekend Giacomo will travel to Texas to pick Luca back up and make sure he goes back to school next week.

Our days are filled with preparations for growth, a YWAM Conference coming in September, Mar preparing for leading the Discipleship Training School in September as well as a trip to Cartagena Colombia from August 3-9 for the University of the Nations international. Promoting our YWAM University in Latin America and serving the wide YWAM Body in our region of the world.

What a joy to serve Jesus in this way and spread His love around the globe mobilizing, equipping and sending a new generation into the world.

Till next time….