That’s a really good question. So we have some point of reference, here’s some context:
[quote=Mark 10:17-31]17 And when he was gone forth into the way, a certain man, running up and kneeling before him, asked him: Good Master, what shall I do that I may receive life everlasting? 18 And Jesus said to him: Why callest thou me good? None is good but one, that is God. 19 Thou knowest the commandments: Do not commit adultery, do not kill, do not steal, bear not false witness, do no fraud, honour thy father and mother. 20 But he answering, said to him: Master, all these things I have observed from my youth. **21 And Jesus, looking on him, loved him and said to him: One thing is wanting unto thee. Go, sell whatsoever thou hast and give to the poor: and thou shalt have treasure in heaven. And come, follow me. **22 Who being struck sad at that saying, went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions. 23 And Jesus looking round about, saith to his disciples: How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 24 And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus again answering, saith to them: Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God? 25 It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26 Who wondered the more, saying among themselves: Who then can be saved? 27 And Jesus looking on them, saith with men it is impossible; but not with God. For all things are possible with God. 28 And Peter began to say unto him: Behold, we have left all things and have followed thee. 29 Jesus answering said: Amen I say to you, there is no man who hath left house or brethren or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, 30 Who shall not receive an hundred times as much, now in this time: houses and brethren and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions: and in the world to come life everlasting. 31 But many that are first shall be last: and the last, first.
The same story appears in Luke:
[quote=Luke 18:18-32]18 And a certain ruler asked him, saying: Good master, what shall I do to possess everlasting life? 19 And Jesus said to him: Why dost thou call me good? None is good but God alone. 20 Thou knowest the commandments: Thou shalt not kill. Thou shalt not commit adultery: Thou shalt not steal: Thou shalt not bear false witness: Honour thy father and mother. 21 Who said: All these things have I kept from my youth. 22 Which when Jesus had heard, he said to him: Yet one thing is wanting to thee. Sell all whatever thou hast and give to the poor: and thou shalt have treasure in heaven. And come, follow me. 23 He having heard these things, became sorrowful: for he was very rich. 24 And Jesus seeing him become sorrowful, said: How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God 25 For it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. 26 And they that heard it said: Who then can be saved? 27 He said to them: The things that are impossible with men are possible with God. 28 Then Peter said: Behold, we have left all things and have followed thee. 29 Who said to them: Amen, I say to you, there is no man that hath left home or parents or brethren or wife or children, for the kingdom of God’s sake, 30 Who shall not receive much more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.
At the very least, the fact that this story appears in more than one of the Gospels indicates its importance. Jesus starts off by basically saying that by following the commandments, you should be pretty good. Then the young man, wants to take it one step further. Jesus responds, and the young man does not like the response because this seems too difficult to do. So, I’m going to let someone else answer the question for me.
Take a look at this link, you’ll find a pretty good explanation of how we can apply this to our life. A little way down the page, where it says “Guard against greed,” the article addresses how we can do this directly.
To answer your original question, I think that it has become embedded in our culture that we need certain things to reach our goals in life. To a certain extent, society is correct: We do need certain things to reach particular goals, BUT if we make our ultimate goal salvation, we may find ourselves needing less and less.