We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.
1 John 4:19-21 ESV
We are men loved by God. By faith through grace, we have been forgiven, saved and received by our Father, who knows us perfectly and claims us unashamedly.
He has done for us that which we did not deserve and will never deserve. He has overabundantly provided for us, that we may be full.
It is then from our fullness that we love and serve others. We love our wives and children not because they are deserving, but because they are ours to steward well until they return to our God who first loved us. We love because we have been enabled to love, not by satisfied conditions or the promise of reciprocated love, but because He first loved us.
The man who is claimed by, known by, loved by, supplied by, and identified by God does not need his woman to tell him he is a man, nor his children to give him a purpose. It may help for a wife to be affirming and children to be appreciative, but at the end of the day, God’s grace is sufficient, and it is from His love that we draw.
Of course, there is a place for support. It is not wrong to ask for help. Don’t deal with all your problems in isolation.
But also, don’t make excuses for your lack of self-control. You don’t need people to drive better in order for you to relax while driving. You don’t need liberals to concede in order for you to get along with where you are. You don’t need your boss to appreciate you as much as he seemingly does your coworker in order for you to feel gratitude. You don’t need your wife to give it up more often in order for you to be faithful, both with your body and your mind.
You need God, and He has made Himself available, to you and to I, now and forever.
Therefore, love, as you have been and are loved.