To Live, To Really Live: Vivir, Realmente Vivir

by Rachel Marie Kang December 26, 2022
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10 (NIV)

Some months ago, I was on the beach in Mexico, watching the crashing waves of the Pacific, el océano Pacífico. Now, I am back home where laundry piles beckon — back to where there is no sun in my hair, no sand in my toes, just stains and sticky floors and stress and strain.

Sometimes, I stop and stare off into the distance and think, Take me back. Take me back to Mexico, back to the view of el Pacífico right outside my window. Take me back to the beauty I touched and tasted. Take me back to the good views and good food, to life being everything I ever dreamed of — and more.

For three days and three nights, I had awoken to the sound of the ocean thrashing and birds chirping. I relaxed in a cabana overlooking the place where the waves met the sand, and I sat under an umbrella by the pool. The trip, this gift — all expenses covered through the generosity of others — was a dream come true. It was everything I ever wanted, everything I ever dreamed of.

There’s this song I love, “Luna y Marea” by Jesús Adrián Romero, one of my favorite singers. Entranced by the lyrics and el ritmo of the song, I let it play on repeat in the shower … in the car … in the kitchen while I cook.

There's a line in the song:

Tú eres el ritmo que sin falta me lleva
a vivir, realmente a vivir.

In English, this translates to:

You (God) are the rhythm that, without fail, leads me
to live, to really live.

It reminds me of the Bible passage where Jesus speaks of sheep and shepherds and of robbers and thieves who come to steal, kill and destroy. To the Pharisees, He said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10).

The Greek word perissos, like its English translation “to the full,” means “abundantly above, beyond measure, more, excessively.” And it pierces my heart.

Living, really living, is so much more than a trip to the beach.
Living, really living, is so much more than just good views and good food — so much more than getting what you want and having your wildest dreams come true.
Living, really living, is realizing that Jesus — our Good Shepherd — is the One keeping us safe from the enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy, and all the while He is satisfying our souls.

In Him we are tended to and taken care of. Gently, He leads us, calling us out to find pastures, to find that He is our pastor and our paradise. To live is to be in Him. To really live is to be with Him.

We don’t have to turn the whole world upside down to find security, salvation and satisfaction — we can find it all in Jesus, the One who offers life through His life, death and resurrection.

He is our daily bread. (John 6:35) His Spirit is like the wind, (John 3:8) and the roaring waves of the water obey Him. (Mark 4:39-41) He is majestic and more magnificent than any view in Mexico, Morocco, Maine or Montana. Our God is el ritmo that, without fail, leads us to live, realmente vivir.

Father, help me to see that You are near. Help me to see that You are here. Thank You for sending Your Son to be my Savior — to save my life and to satisfy my soul. Thank You for sending Jesus, the Good Shepherd, to tend to my needs and take care of me. Thank You for this abundant life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Perhaps in no other way do we more vibrantly reflect our Creator than with our creativity. In Let There Be Art, Rachel Marie Kang gives you permission to embrace the peace, pleasure and purpose inherent in your art and in the process of making it. This passionate, creative and cathartic journey invites you to create truthfully out of the broken and beautiful pieces of your life as well as to offer your heart and your art in hopes of helping a hurting world. Pick up your copy today!


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Psalm 23:1-2, “The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures …” (NIV)

God is your companion, your shepherd, your portion — He is the One who saves and the One who satisfies. How does this truth resonate with your soul today?

We’re always here to hear your heart — come and share your thoughts in the comments.

© 2022 by Rachel Marie Kang. All rights reserved.

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