This is a phrase I came across while reading Wm. Paul Young's book The Shack. It was my second time through. I can say with complete honesty that this is the most compelling book I have read in awhile. This time I came away with something completely different.
The term he used was living loved. In relation to contentment, at least in my own life, it has been the missing ingredient. I have never been able to just relax in God's love because I have painted myself as unloveable. I've concocted all sorts of reasons why He (and anyone else who would dare love me) should not. I've lived as though I'm a disappointment...that I do not deserve his attention and affection. The same has been true in my relationship with my husband. Whenever I goof up/act selfish/don't show love, it happens because internally I've believed that I am no good, just a horrible b*tch or whatever. This is a huge obstacle to contenment. I can never ever ever live up to the standard I have set in my own mind which isn't even as high as the one set by Jesus example, so that leaves me doomed, hopeless and in deep despair most of the time--not quite the picture of contenment.
...While we were yet sinners (going 180degrees in the wrong direction, doing everything we could to run our own lives into the ground), Christ died for us.
I never had anything to offer him in the first place, yet he wanted me.
Dark am I, yet LOVELY! (even in my weakness, he loves me)
The hard part is holding onto the fact that he's not setting his love on me because I'm the most conscientious believer, most well versed in the Bible, most faitful attender of church meetings, prayer meetings, committee meetings, the most thoughtful, caring, loving wife, the most alert and aware and 'with-it' mom...or even the least aggravated at her kids. He loves me because I am HIS.
For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined he also justified (made them right with himself); those he justified, he also glorified.
He's made a way for me to be pleasing to Him, to be right with Him and to be LIKE Him. That is a truth that will mark the beginning for me...out of condemnation into his LAVISH grace...which brings me incomparable peace.