Elmer’s Hand


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Elmer’s Hand

There are some people who make you smile when you think of them.

Elmer Conner was one of those people.

I can take you to the exact spot where I met him. It’s the near the coffee pot in the Dry Creek Camp cafeteria.

I’d been told earlier that Elmer Conner, an extremely successful contractor in Lake Charles, had a unique philosophy on finances, generosity, and faith.

I wanted to know more, so I introduced myself and asked about his philosophy of giving and finances.

He put down his coffee cup and held up an open palm. “Curt, when God begins blessing people with wealth, He’s doing it so we can bless others.”

Elmer Conner used his free hand as if placing money into his open palm, then clenched his fist. “The problem is that we have a tendency to close our fist, thinking these resources are ours, not God’s.” 

There’s a two-fold problem with this: First of all, we can’t bless others with a tight fist.”

Elmer smiled. “Secondly, if we close our fist, God’s not able to keep pouring the blessings in our hand.”

He opened his hand. “God wants us to live with an open hand.”

It was one of the simplest lessons I’ve ever heard. It became what I still call “Open Hand Living,” and I can attest that Elmer’s way of approaching our blessings works.

 I am forever grateful for that profound story, and that’s why I’m passing it on.

Thanks, Elmer, for that enduring lesson by the coffee pot. 


“ . . . and through his faith, though he died, he still speaks.”

-Hebrews 11:4


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