Why Did a Leader Sit on a Pole?

Alvin Shipwreck Kelly
Alvin Shipwreck Kelly (Wikimedia Commons)

Someone must have triple dog-dared Shipwreck Kelly to "go sit on a flagpole." In 1928, in Louisville, Kentucky, Kelly perched himself on a flagpole for over 100 hours. And people came to watch!

There were additional pole-sitting events and records set. Kelly regained the record in 1930 in Atlantic City with a 49-day stay.

The stock market crash in 1929 helped people lose interest in such events until the Guinness Book of Records was published in 1956.

Perhaps Kelly had read about Simeon Stylites. He climbed a pillar in Syria in 423 and stayed on the pillar until he died 37 years later. (The modern language word "stylites" is defined as a pole sitter.)

Simeon became known as a pillar-saint, which is defined as a type of Christian ascetic who lives on pillars, preaching, fasting and praying.

Simeon did all he could to escape the world horizontally for prayers and private devotion. He obviously felt that vertical separation was his only escape. It didn't work out for the monk, as thousands visited his pole daily for prayers and blessings.

As we compare Kelly's stunts to St. Simeon's devotion, we find a clear principle of leadership. Leaders inspire.

Kelly said, "Look at me, I'm sitting on a pole." St. Simeon inspired others to find a closer walk with God. Actions define a leader. 

While we don't know about the conversations St. Simeon had with his people, we can conclude that he wanted to remain close to God and inspire others to do the same.

Leaders take actions to inspire their team. Sometimes the actions may seem grandiose or "out there" or "up there," but the shock and awe value of actions can set a team afire.

Inspiration doesn't occur with pom-poms and morning cheers. A leader charges a hill and inspires a team with actions rather than words.

God calls us to "come up higher." I'm personally not looking for a pole.

I just want to inspire someone today.

 


 

Today's Scripture

"I press toward the goal to the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 3:14).

 


 

Platform Tip No. 43

As your platform develops, you will find that more people come to you for help with their problems. Isn't this better than you going out to the marketplace to find people with problems?

Your platform magnet will draw people to you.

Your message gives hope, right?

 


 

Do you want to learn more about developing your personal platform?

Send for my free series of lessons titled, "The Fundamentals of Creating, Curating and Developing Content for Multiple Platforms." Send your request to: platform@ministrytodaymag.com.

We will not share your email address with anyone.

 


 

Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president—Media Group, Charisma Media. Sign up here for Dr. Greene's newsletters.


To contact us or to submit an article, click here.


Get Charisma's best content delivered right to your inbox! Never miss a big news story again. Click here to subscribe to the Charisma News newsletter.

Five ways to deepen your relationship with God, increase your faith and save money!

  • Deepen Your Relationship with God with a FREE eCourse: Click Here to view all of our free e-Courses. Favorite topics include Fear, Forgiveness, Holy Spirit, Supernatural, and How to Hear God.
  • Super Discounts and Close-Out Specials: Click Here to view all our bundles and close-out specials and save up to 86%! Prayer, Holy Spirit, Anointing, the Supernatural and more.
  • God Wants to Anoint Women Now: Rise up and enter the anointing of Deborah, Anna, Esther, Ruth and Hannah. You were called to go higher. Click Here to learn more.
  • Change Your Atmosphere and Circumstances Through Prayer! John Eckhardt's prayer bundle gives you six powerful books to help you pray and change any situation. Click Here.
  • HUGE Bible Sale!: Click Here to save up to 50% off a great selection of Bibles. Plus, get a free gift with each order!

Subscription Special: Subscribe to Charisma for Only $24.97 and get a free gift. With your subscription, you'll receive Born For Significance by best-selling author Bill Johnson. View Offer

Attention Pastors and Leaders: Leadership training and development are crucial for success. Enroll in a FREE 1-hour leadership mini-course by Dr. Mark Rutland. View Details

Charisma News - Informing believers with news from a Spirit-filled perspective