“I side with Bishop Irenaeus on this point. He argued in the second century that while humans had not been created perfect in the image of God, humans had been made perfectible with the potential to grow into the image of God. According to Irenaeus, sin was a product of learning and growth and therefore part of God’s process. The important point is to believe that we are worthy of love just the way we are so that we are then capable of loving others just the way they are.” by Fred C. Plumer, Progressive Christian Spirituality in The Progressive Christian p. 15
It’s been a long time since I read Irenaeus bu this summary rings true to my memory.
I wonder what kind of world it might be if we acted in ways that lived out this belief that we are capable of loving others just the way they are because we have been loved just the way we are. And that by that very love we become more than we currently are and they, too, become more than they currently are. And we both grow into the image of God.