In 2 Kings 13-19, a sad account is told. "Elisha was suffering from the illness from which he died," and "Jehoash king of Israel went down to see him." Elisha told the king to get a bow and some arrows and to open the east window and to shoot "The LORD´s arrow of victory, the arrow of victory over Aram!" Johoash did these things, each at the time Elisha instructed. Elish then instructed him to "take the arrows," and "strike the ground." Jehoash´s halfhearted attempt displeased Elisha.
Put into other terms, God isn't being petty. He's saying "if you're going to do something, put ALL your effort into it. Then I'll multiply your efforts to turn your best efforts into GREAT efforts."