This is So Hard, but Necessary to Live Free!

Gold Brush Stroke

This, my friends, is so hard! In fact in our culture, choosing to store up heavenly treasures instead of earthly is often met with ridicule. But, oh, is it freeing! 

Choosing to store up heavenly instead of earthly treasures can be hard, especially in our culture. But how freeing! Share on X

I’m talking about detaching ourselves from “stuff.” I’m talking about leaving the comparison game for the living-free one. I’m talking about living an uplifting, impactful, in-the-moment, free kind of life.

live free

To live free from clutter and strangle holds: It’s a life I want, but my flesh fights at every turn. Our affluent culture adds to the difficulty, fueling our natural bent toward selfish desires.

Every kind of media advertises stuff. On every street corner. Throughout our favorite TV shows (okay, let’s be honest, many of our shows promote having the latest and greatest too). In newspapers and magazines.

In America, especially, it is impossible to get away from. Thus lay a big problem: the wooing of our heart.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus pronounced: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21 and Luke 12:34).
Our treasure reflects our heart’s desire. And when we are enticed with the bright and shiny, the newest, the latest and greatest, the comfortable, and the fun, it is difficult to keep from desiring that treasure.
In fact, due to the excess we have in America, I wonder if coveting is a commandment more easily broken in this country than in poorer nations.

The Difficulty

Lately, I’ve been bombarded with ads for Apple products. The new Apple watch, the iPhone 6 plus, the Mac computers. In my weaker moments, I find myself thinking how nice it would be to have one (or all) of those.

Even though my current phone works great. Even though my computer does exactly what I need it to do. Even though, I haven’t a need for the Apple watch.

Lately, Dave and I have been discussing getting a different vehicle. Although we have something with 4 wheel drive as a backup, it is easy to begin longing for a newer SUV. After all, everyone else has newer vehicles.

Lately, our son has been asking for a smartphone. After all, everyone else has a phone, and they have really nice smartphones.

And I sympathize with him, and with you and with my husband and me.  

When we look around, it does seem that everyone else has a newer vehicle. It does seem that every 14 year old has a nice smartphone. It is tempting to think we “need” those latest and greatest gadgets.

Questions to Ask

greatest treasure

There is nothing wrong with having a nice vehicle or a decent smartphone. But before we give into the desire to buy more or better stuff, there are a couple questions we’d do well to ask.

Does this have a hold on my heart? and Do I need to have it for my peace of mind, for my happiness?

In other words, Has this become my heart’s desire?

Live Free

As God’s people, 

we should be longing to be with Him, not other people.

we should be longing for Heaven, not an exotic vacation.

we should be longing for treasures that will last for eternity, not treasures that will wear out in a few years.

Christ Jesus has already fulfilled all our heart’s desires. We just need to fill our hearts with Him to experience that peace and satisfaction. 

Jesus has already fulfilled all our heart's desires. We just need to fill our heart w/ Him to experience that peace. Share on X

Daily we need to fill up with the heavenly treasures God offers: His love, His grace, His mercy.

Daily we need to fill up with the heavenly treasures God offers: His love, His grace, His mercy. Share on X

That leaves little room for earthly treasures to get a foothold. 

So regularly do a heart check. Ask yourself those two questions.

Is there something, other than the Lord, that has a hold on my heart?

Is there something I’m longing for or pursuing that is robbing me of my peace and happiness? 

If the answer is yes, spend extra time with Him decluttering your heart, so you can live free in Christ!

Two questions to regularly ask yourself on your way to living free in Christ. Share on X

“Don’t collect for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But collect for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves don’t break in and steal.” Matthew 6:19-20

Reflections: What has a grip on your heart? How will you live: reaching for what everyone else has or using the blessings you’ve been given to make a difference now and live free?

More than 4 years of counting and I’ve surpassed 4,500 gifts in Ann Voskamp’s Joy Dare! What a blessing! Here are numbers #4,684–4,704. Read my entire list by clicking here.

  • Day spent with Hubby: relationship time!; Good news from Sis; Evening enjoying speech events at conference
  • Morning sun to offset the cold; Best beef roast ever!; Rach’s success at getting her dad and brother to listen to me read “Olga Da Polga”
  • Sharing my morning walk w/ my deer friends (4-legged kind); Rach’s good-natured teasing; Wrapping up the day early
  • Chaperoning a jazz band clinic, such a great group of young people!; Brief get-together with a friend I haven’t seen in a long time; Ending the day with those I love the most
  • A slew of appointments set and entered into the calendar; Having a hymn grab you with hope and not let go!; My daughter’s head resting on my shoulder
  • Strong performances by our high school kids at district speech contest; Hanging with a friend at contest; Laughing till near tears at Rachel’s antics while playing games tonight: everybody should play games with this girl!
  • Gorgeous morning “frosting” on the trees; Watching football playoff games w/ family; Picking up knitting again, a loved hobby of mine that was set aside a while ago


By His Grace,



  1. Kristine Brown MTY on January 28, 2016 at 8:15 am

    Yes, yes, and yes again! This is a daily battle, especially with kids:( Our son is approaching 16, and trying to teach him how to balance wants and needs is a crazy adventure. God’s Word gives great verses for us to go to when we need wisdom to direct us, the verses you shared here are perfect! Thank you for this necessary reminder, Julie. I needed it today.

    • Julie Sunne on January 28, 2016 at 9:39 am

      Kids certainly do amplify things, don’t they, Kristine? So grateful for God’s patience and mercy!

  2. Cecelia Lester (Quiet Spirit) on January 28, 2016 at 5:20 pm

    It’s difficult to decide what is a want and what is a need. I am in the middle of that process, myself. I also needed this reminder today.

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Julie Sunne

Hello, I'm Julie, an imperfect wife and mother of four. Life in this broken world is not always easy. Yet, joy can be found in each day through the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I find it's easy for our day's blessings to get lost in its happenings. But God's "mercies never end" (Lamentations 3:22) and His "grace is sufficient" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

May the posts and pages on this site offer you a measure of peace and encouragement.

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