Ellison H. Fitzgerald III was one of the
wealthiest men alive. He had mansions on four continents, a traveling
servant staff, and three itinerary secretaries. No major world event took
place without Fitz knowing about it before hand. His security detail was
composed of an international security force from three countries. Fitz
could not be reached or contacted by anyone except the head of state in
any nation you want to name. For all intents and purposes, Fitz was
unreachable. Few people knew about him. Wealth and power were what gave
Fitz a life. However, Fitz was an empty man. Fitz had an empty life. He
had no friends and few acquaintances. The people Fitz knew always wanted
something from him. There was also his nasty past.
Fitz grew up spoiled. Fitz got whatever he
wanted. No…Fitz got any material thing anyone would want, then some. In
the luxury of Fitz's life, there was his anger and frustration of unknown
origin. There were times when Fitz hated his life. He also hated all the
people in his life. Fitz had an empty tortured soul.
It was 6:35 PM and Sarahette, Fitz's chef
brought Fitz's dinner to him on a sterling silver tray. As Fitz began to
consume his steak and lobster, a man appeared in the doorway to an
adjoining room. Fitz saw the man out of the corner of his eye. Fitz
reached for his security alert phone. The man said, "Sorry Fitz, your
security system isn't going to work for awhile. Everything in your world
is frozen. We need to talk." Fitz went to reach for his alert phone
but even Fitz was frozen. Fitz could not move. The man continued, "Fitz,
you need to grow up. You need to get real. You need to let go of your
anger and frustration. Fitz, you are one of the most powerful people on
earth. Unfortunately for you, unless you lose your anger, you will destroy
the world. Fitz, I am going to give you the chance of a lifetime. I am
going to make you a clown and a pauper. In two days you will have a heart
attack. There is nothing you can do about it. No doctor on earth can help
you. You will have the heart attack and Sarahette will find you, call 911,
and eventually you will survive. While you are in the hospital
recuperating the hospital will lose your identity. You will not be able to
prove who you are. Your identity will remain a secret for a time. After
you recuperate in the hospital you will have no place to go, no money, no
possessions, nothing at all. You will be offered a job as a member of the
custodial staff at Case Children's Hospital. Although you will be insulted
by the job offer, you will have to accept. Once you accept the job, you
must dress up like a clown and go about your custodial duties working on
the children's ward where all the children are severely ill. Each day, you
are to touch the right hand of as many bedfast children as you can. Your
job as the clown will last one year. After one year, you will recover and
be able to prove your identity.
In an instant the man in the doorway was
gone. Everything was back to its unfrozen normal. Fitz reached for the
security phone and summoned his head of security. Fitz informed the head
of security they had a major security breach. Within three minutes ten
security staff had converged on Fitz's dining room. Head of security
ordered a replay to be run on all cameras around the room and around the
mansion. No person was seen on any of the replay videos standing in the
doorway. No person was seen anywhere in or around the mansion other than
Fitz and the staff.
Within hours Fitz was sitting in the office
of the world's leading heart specialist. A complete battery of cardiac
tests was performed on Fitz. No heart problem was found.
Fitz returned home in a mild panic. A day
later, as Fitz was pacing back and forth in his office, he had a sudden
chest pain. Fitz hit his internal paging system for Sarahette. Sarahette
found Fitz unconscious on the floor. Sarahette called 911.
Fitz woke up in a hospital bed unable to
remember much of anything. An hour later a hospital administrator came to
Fitz's bedside and apologized for losing Fitz's billfold and contact
information but assured Fitz the situation would be corrected. Fitz went
to write his name and address on a piece of paper but Fitz could not
remember his name or his phone number. Fitz's past was a blank.
Two weeks passed. Hospital administrators
still had no clue as to who Fitz was and neither did Fitz. Although Fitz
was beginning to have specific memories of matters in his life, Fitz could
not remember his name, address, or phone. When the time came for Fitz to
be dismissed, he was sent to a social service half-way house where Fitz
was provided lodging and a temp job. The temp job was being a member of
Case Children's Hospital custodial staff. Fitz's supervisor ordered Fitz
to dress up like a clown to lift the spirits of the severally ill children
on the ward on which Fitz worked.
Fitz remembered the man in the doorway.
Fitz remembered the order given by the man. So every day Fitz touched the
right hand of every bedfast child. A light began to shine in Fitz's life.
Every day Fitz took off the grease paint in the evening. However, when
Fitz looked in the mirror at himself without the grease paint, Fitz felt
One year later, at lunch in the hospital
cafeteria, Fitz remembered who he was. Fitz finished his lunch and
finished his shift. At 5:15 as was his custom, Fitz took off the grease
paint. Fitz walked out of the hospital a "free man" so to speak.
Fitz asked a friend for a ride out to Fitz's mansion. After thanking the
friend for the ride, Fitz walked up to the guard shack where a new guard
asked for Fitz's ID, not knowing who Fitz was. Fitz had no ID and asked
for Sarahette to be brought to the front gate. When Sarahette arrived at
the gate, Fitz stepped out from behind a stone pillar. Sarahette fainted
from the shock at seeing Fitz who everyone thought was lost, abducted, or
Sarahette was revived and identified Fitz.
Fitz and Sarahette walked inside his mansion. The old emptiness within
Fitz came back in such a dramatic fashion Fitz nearly fell to the floor.
The last year had been a life-changer for Fitz. Fitz asked Sarahette to
come into his office. Fitz recounted for her the events of the last year.
In the next hour or two, Fitz talked with Sarahette. He asked her about
her family, where she was raised, and what she liked to do. Questions Fitz
never thought to ask or even cared about before his becoming a clown and
working with children. Fitz saw the light of soul Sarahette carried. Fitz
was grieved he had missed her shining light. In their talk, Sarahette made
the comment "Prayers get answered." Fitz asked Sarahette,
"Did you pray for me while I was gone?" To which Sarahette
replied, "I have always prayed for you. I have worked here five years
and I prayed for you the whole time." Fitz was deeply moved.
Sarahette had cared about him but being buried under his wealth and power,
Fitz never knew.
It was about 10:00 PM and Fitz left
Sarahette a note saying he would be back tomorrow. Fitz returned to the
half-way house to spend the night. Fitz's mansion was the emptiest place
on earth. The next morning, Fitz went to the hospital and put on his
grease paint and clown suit. During the past year Fitz's life was not
about sweeping floors. Fitz's life was about lifting up sick children.
The next Sunday, Sarahette invited Fitz to
church. He accepted. During the next year, Fitz sold off all his mansions,
married Sarahette, and expanded his clown job by hiring other clowns for
the hospital. Eventually Fitz accepted Christ into his life, and helped
start clown ministries in other hospitals.
Prayers get answered.
John 14:14 You may ask me for anything
in my name, and I will do it. (NIV)
was fiction and appeared in January, 2010, in the Virtual Church
web site at http://www.findthepower.com