We began doing work around the house in preparation to put it on the market. I didn’t realize how much needed to be done until we started working on our list. Inevitably, as we took a closer look more areas that need attention surfaced. The inside of the house was ready to be shown, but the outside needed some TLC. We wanted to pressure wash the house, fence, and garage floor, paint the garage floor (which required first cleaning the garage), paint the front door and railings on the front porch, mulch the flower beds, plant a few flowers, and resurface the driveway just to name a few. No big deal. Right…
One afternoon as we began the pressure washing I looked over and saw Stuart scrubbing the top lattice section of the 50-foot fence with a 3-inch scrub brush and cup of bleach. Stuart pays attention to detail. I can appreciate that about his engineering mind, but this was a little much. For starters, no one is going to notice if the fence has dirt. This is hurricane season in Florida for goodness sake. Secondly, this wasn’t even our fence! It was on our neighbor’s side of the property line. Not only was he going to pressure wash and scrub the side facing our house but he told our neighbor he would wash his side as well. Perfect.
There was so much to be done on the house and so little time. I really thought this was a complete waste of good energy. Recognizing that this tedious task would not go away on its own and was something I could do to free up Stuart for other tasks, I offered, begrudgingly, to scrub the fence for him. He thanked me, said not to worry about our neighbor’s side (we would just pressure wash it), and was off to the garage.
As I neared the end of cleaning our side Jesus words from the Sermon on the Mount came to mind, “If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles.” (Matthew 5:41) These words told me to scrub my neighbor’s side of the fence as well. Yes, this was a very small way to apply this scripture, but it got me thinking: “How many times do I go the extra mile?”
Stuart does this. Remember how detail oriented he is? This does not just apply to projects-he lives this out in every area of his life. He always goes the extra mile whether it is on the job, cooking, folding laundry, helping someone in need, or cleaning a fence. I am usually so concerned about efficiency that not only do I concede to suffer through one mile but I want to do that mile as quickly as possible.
Maybe you are a “two-miler” like my husband. For those of you I commend for this quality. But if you are like me I encourage you to sometimes throw efficiency out the window and do a little extra. Maybe even go mile 3 or 4. Just because…just because Jesus said so.