I have a great wife. As with most spouses, though, we do not do everything exactly the same. For example, for many projects that I have to do, my goal is simply to get it done. I want to do it well, but I do not want to take all day to do a project that could take an hour. My wife, on the other hand, likes to take her time and pay more attention to details. She often takes longer to get things done, but her quality of work is usually better and the results show.
Occasionally, my way works fine — especially if the project is more along the lines of demolition. Usually, though, on projects that people notice, my wife’s way is much better. So, we work together. For example, if we decide to tear up carpet and replace it with tile, I will do the physical labor of ripping up the carpet, sanding, taking out nails, etc., while my wife will do the more precise work of laying out the tile, setting it in place, and doing the tasks that will be noticed later.
Here is some proof. I got a paint sprayer and decided to try it out while my wife was inside. I threw a piece of cardboard on the deck and sprayed the railing. It looked fine to me. When my wife came out later, though, she noticed many places where I applied paint unintentionally. That would not have happened if my wife had done the painting.
Here is another little project. My wife thought it would be good to paint our porch light. I would have got some paint, held some cardboard behind it while I sprayed, and tried to wipe the extra paint off the siding and scrape the paint off the glass when I was done. My wife, though, patiently took the lamp apart, took the metal pieces inside and carefully painted them, cleaned the glass, taped paper all around the rest of the lamp that was still outside the house, carefully painted it, and then put it all back together. My way would have been faster. Her way looks much better.
Think about it. If two pieces of furniture were the same price, would you rather buy the pressed-wood piece that was manufactured in bulk in a warehouse, held together by staples, and was guaranteed for sixty days; or would you rather have the handcrafted piece made by a local craftsman, held together with screws and glue and precise fitting, and was guaranteed for life?
So it is with much of what we do in life. Often it is extremely worthwhile to slow down and do things right and well rather than rush around and hurriedly try to throw a project together without a lot of planning and foresight, ignore the mistakes rather than fix them, be content with poor work and call the project complete – even though it is something of which we really ought to be ashamed. We should have slowed down and done things right. As British statesman Philip Stanhope said in the eighteenth century, “Whatever is worth doing at all is worth doing well.” As Solomon wrote, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might” (Ecclesiastes 9:10).