Thursday, January 2, 2014


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Alan P. Scaglione

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Reflections of True Love-- Like Jesus!

  Reflections Of… True Love!

                       By Alan P. Scaglione

I pray that everyone had a wonderful Christmas!
Our 4 year old grandson said “It was the best Christmas of my whole life!” – did I mention that he is 4? I thought so!
And now onto our New Year ahead.
This is a feel good story that just has to make you smile!
It really exemplifies the scripture “this is how they will know you are my disciples—If you have love one for another!”
This all started with a boy, standing in a shower, hearing the voice of the Lord!
That boy is 27 years old and loves his mom so much that he just wanted to show her how much he cared!
And he asked God what he could do for his mom… and apparently, God said “build her a garden!”
Yep—I have to admit when Chris called me with this epiphany—I wanted to say “Chris, your heart is in the right place, but…a garden?”
But… I didn’t! I said to him “If God told you to do this, then God will provide all you need to get it done!”
Honestly, I was ready for it NOT to happen, but… I never doubt when someone says “God told me…” I just wait and see.
And boy…did I ever!
Christopher is a tenderhearted, good man to the core, and he had to do something for his mom, who is battling cancer.
Doctors’ prognosis isn’t good, but… Sandy has a ferocious faith and if anyone can persuade God for a healing—it’s Chris’s mom!
Chris is a landscape specialist, working with a crew who landscape for a living, 40+ hours a week.
These people don’t normally donate their time… but this is not a normal situation.
Chris talked with the owner of his company Joe Chilleini about asking people to donate money to building his mom a garden.
He told Joe about his mom’s diagnosis and how much she loves flowers and what a great green thumb she has—from her Mom Edna.
Joe said “Chris, forget the donations—I will supply what you need—let’s do this for your mom!”
Wow! Step one accomplished!
Joe told Christ to get Brian, the horticulturist, to go to Dunnellon, Florida, about 100 miles away, and set up the plans.
Brian actually volunteered to drive up with his daughter to survey the backyard.
He was onboard.
Then came the supplies—Chris told a vendor, and they donated some of the plants.
But the hard part was yet to be supplied—free labor!
Chris announced to his crew what he was doing and who he was doing it for and why he was doing this!
These men volunteered their Saturday, with no pay, to travel from Ruskin, Florida to Dunnellon—to plant a garden.
We’re talking Gilbert and John and Humberto and Ricky and… Leo!
Let me tell you about Leo.
He told Chris that he was honored to do this for his mom because Leo was a Christian and this was the right thing to do.
Leo was the one who touched Sandy’s heart the most.
He asked to take a picture with her—with his own camera!
Jessica, Sandy’s daughter-in-law, snapped the photo—with Leo grinning ear to ear.
Sandy commented to me “Why would anyone want to take a picture with me? Who am I?
I told her “you are the person they came all this way for just to plant you a garden!”
She just cried.
Sandy and her husband Derrick fed the men, with help from son Shane, and their daughters-in-law Cali and Jessica.
It was a family affair!
All the boys asked in return was “Can we fish off of your dock when we are done?”
As you can see—they got their wish!
When the day was over, and they workers had left, Sandy fulfilled the wish of her son Chris.
She stepped out into her garden, with new St. Augustine grass, all of her plants now planted and landscaped and…
A beautiful symbol of the love from her son Christopher!
And… the love of strangers who just wanted to show their love to her!
And isn’t that what true Christianity should be?
When we have love, one for another!
By the way… those boys?
Well… their truck broke down on the ride home…
They didn’t make it home until 10 pm that night..
That’s a 14 hour Saturday away from family, donated to build a garden for a stranger!
But, as Leo’s picture proved—it was worth it all!
And no one complained—they were just honored to be able to fulfill the dream God gave.
In a shower!

Brother “A”
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Wednesday, December 25, 2013


"And now,,, The Gift is being passed on to our youngest- Sweet baby Cali!"


                             Special Christmas Edition

                                                                                                          By Alan P. Scaglone

 I wrote this song years ago…
called The Gift
On this night, so long ago
A baby born to Mary
Of all those around, only she would know
The burden her boy would carry
For all of us…
  Sitting here…
    Saved by her sweet Son
He was sent to earth
  To give a gift
    That could never be outdone
The gift He gave
The gift He brought
From His Father
Looking down on each of us
His gift was wrapped
In swaddling clothes
To someday hang on top a tree
He was born to die
To give the gift of life
So willingly….
He gave His gift
To you and me.
Two thousand years
Have passed since then
This gift still given freely
To those who seek
They all will find
Their blinded eyes will see
His gift of love
Sent long ago
Still just as new as then
Still changing lives
His gift of life
Still celebrating
That night when…..
The gift He gave
The gift He brought
From His Father
Looking down on each of us
His gift was wrapped
In swaddling clothes
To someday hang on top a tree
He was born to die
To give the gift of life
So willingly….
He gave His gift
To you and me.

Points2Ponder  When’s the last time you just let the words speak to your heart and then…shared what they meant to you with someone who means something to you?
Those words talk about this great gift of God… HIS precious Son!
As we celebrate HIS virgin birth, the whole world is united in pausing to reflect on the greatest gift for mankind.
There are people in the four corners of this world who are celebrating the birth of the Messiah Emmanuel.
Isaiah 9: 6 declares:
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder:
and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Jesus is all those things—He is the fulfillment of the law, the promise of the Messiah, the fruition of God’s Plan to rescue His people!
He willingly…Gave HIS Gift… to you and me!
It’s not the presents underneath your tree
But HIS presence all around your tree…
That’s the true meaning of Christmas!
In every smile…
In every hug…
In every heartfelt I love you…
He speaks His love
He shows His grace
By giving ALL that HE could do!
He… gave His life
He… shed His blood
He…fulfilled God’s loving plan
To rescue us
To redeem us all
To reunite this family of man!
So…this gift He gave
This gift He brought…
From His Father…
Was so we could be: redeemed, reconciled, reunited, restored…
With our Creator!
And it all started with a baby in a manger…
So long ago…
Yet still so relevant!
His Gift…Keeps On Giving, from generation to generation.
We teach it to our children, just like our parents taught it to us.
My mother Rose taught me.
I taught my son Schuyler and his sisters.
And now he teaches his 4 year old son Jett and soon, his 9 month old daughter Cali will learn the story of Christmas.
From generation to generation—we celebrate The Gift given so long ago!
It is our responsibility and our right—to share That Age Old Story!
On this day… above all other days…
We pause to praise the child who fulfilled God’s plan…
And with a heart full of gratitude…
We say Hosanna in the Highest!
With a humble heart…
Just like Santa bowing on bended knee…
Because… even Santa knows…
JESUS is the reason for The Season!
Merry Christmas to us all!
Happy Birthday Jesus!
 I’m Just… Reflecting on – The Good Life!


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Sunday, December 22, 2013

Reflections of ... The Gift!

                  "Merry Christmas From Jett and Cali!"

Reflections Of… The Gift!

                 By Alan P. Scaglione

Merry Christmas, Ya’ll!
It is the first day of Winter—and it reached 86 degrees in sunshiny Florida today!
So much for White Christmas!
Nope, our Santa is sipping on sweet tea while lounging by the pool in his Bermuda shorts and crocs!
And yet—it’s still Christmas!
There’s been such a controversy this year over celebrating Christmas!
Just saying the words “Merry Christmas” seems to draw enemy lines.
Are you in the “Merry Christmas” camp or… Are you in the “Happy Holidays” camp?
It’s even taken on a militant atmosphere, with people becoming defiant in both camps!
At our local grocery store, I told the clerk “Merry Christmas” and she turned around and said “Happy Holidays!” with a smirk on her face!
Like I had said something wrong and she was correcting me!
Let’s get one thing straight—I do not intend to offend but I also will not apologize for celebrating Christmas!
It’s a national Holiday—signed into law by President Ulysses S. Grant!
So…regardless of the spiritual significance—and that IS THE IMPORTANT THING—it is still a Federal Holiday!
Not Happy Holidays Day but… Christmas Day!
And I have NOT seen any of those pushing Happy Holidays ask to work that day since they don’t celebrate Christmas!
Nope—they gladly take the day offwith pay—but want me to call it something else!
Just not gonna happen!
I explained it to a friend recently like this:
I am a proud American—no one prouder to be born in these United States of America!
And I would NEVER think to apologize or minimize my pride in the good ol’ U. S. of A!
And I bet you feel the same way!
BUT… I am as proud, if not more… to be a citizen of HEAVEN, a son of God, a child of the Living King…
So I will not ever be apologizing or minimizing my pride of being a CHRISTian!
I respect Hanukah and Ramadan and Kwanzaa—but I am not Jewish, Muslim or African, so… I don’t celebrate those holidays!
I don’t ask them to NOT celebrate their holiday because I don’t share its significance or importance.
No—I accept our differences, respect the importance that holiday has in their life, and afford them the freedom to celebrate their day!
This day is my day to celebrate Jesus, the Savior of my world, the Messiah sent to earth to redeem His people, to save the lost!

He is Emmanuel—God With Us!

He is the gift spoken of in Luke chapter 2:

7 And Mary brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.
12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
So… Respect The Gift- give HIM HIS DUE—and proudly proclaim


 Brother “A”

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Wednesday, December 18, 2013


                   "Happy Anniversary to the Love of my Life!"


                         By Alan P. Scaglone

 Today is a special day for me!
Today is my anniversary of the best day of my life.
Fourteen years ago, my Sweet Bella said yes!
I still don’t know why!
She is just so way above my pay grade!
She is just more than I deserve.
She is just a reminder that God loves me enough to send her to be here for me.
And for that… I am just so in awe!
Fourteen years later—she still believes in me and respects me and support me.
And believe me—in 14 years with a blended family of 6 kids who have thrown every possible unexpected event at us…
We still love one another and would rather be with each other than anyone else.
And for that…I am thankful!

Points2Ponder  When’s the last time you just paused and thanked your spouse for loving you?

Sometimes, I meet couples, and you can tell… they are not necessarily “happily married!”
Could be the grunt from the man or the sneer from the wife—but, you can tell—not much happily ever after happening in their house.
And I feel sorry for them—and yet, so lucky for us.
I have always said… all you need to know good is to have had bad.
It’s all a frame of reference—a sense of perspective.
And we both know from our past how it feels to Not be happily married.
And that’s a commitment we made 14 years ago—to always make the effort to live happily ever after.
It does take effort—we live in a “Whatever” World—where no one works at relationships anymore.
If it takes a little effort, just ditch it and move on to the next great thing.
Problem is… you find yourself ditching and moving on… a whole lot!
And most of that time… you are miserably alone.
I say miserably alone because… I have always said that for those who choose to alone and are happy with their life…
I will never challenge their happiness—I don’t have that right to infer that they cannot be happy unless they are married, sharing life with someone they love.
Nope—I am just grateful that I am happily married, sharing my life with someone I love.
With someone who gets me—the writer, the talker, the social guy, the passionate Italian, the friend to many, the father to three, the Nano to our grands.
And she loves all of it—and tolerates some of it—I am sure she would like to put a “mute” button on me sometimes—who wouldn’t?
My Bella just understands me—not sure anyone else fully does!
I don’t have to explain my motivation between my actions—and I don’t have to hide my true self from her—she accepts me for me!
And I do the same for her—although she has a lot less “things” to accept!
I am just so thankful that… 14 years later—we are still in love, still respect each other and still prefer each other to anyone else!
She has taught me so much about how to be me…
She has taught me that I can be still and not be antsy.
She has taught me that I can be alone and not lonely.
She has taught me that I can be quiet and not need to speak.
She has taught me that I can be satisfied and not always yearn for more.
She has taught me that I can be magnanimous and not need to be acknowledged.
Those are things I never had 14 years ago.
I tell her that I am the lucky one.
I don’t deserve her—I earn her every day!
She says “that’s right—never forget it!” and she smiles that smile I love so much.
I just had to stop and tell the world—
I am so thankful for my Bella!
Maybe you should tell your spouse Thank You?

I’m Just… Reflecting on – The Good Life!


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Share a story about your spouse!





Sunday, December 15, 2013

Reflections of Family You Choose

                        "A Perfect Picture of Four Sisters!"

Reflections Of… Family you choose!

                     By Alan P. Scaglione

Did you know that Jesus was part of a blended family?
He was—he even had a stepfather!
Yep—Joseph was the first recorded Stand Up Guy- he chose to raise someone else’s son.
When you look at the Christmas story…
We don’t often look at Joseph and see the story from his view.
He was a son of a carpenter. His father was a carpenter so he would be a carpenter.
He had this girl he loved enough to marry.
Everything in his life was going just as it was planned.
He would marry his girl, and they would live a simple life, full of love and devotion to their family.
Well…he got most of that right—but simple life? Not so much.
He found out in a dream that his girlfriend was pregnant from someone else.
He had a legal right to have her killed because of the shame she brought on him.
But instead, he listened to the angel who explained that they had been chosen to be a family.
A family for Jesus!
Matthew Chapter 1 tells us:

18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily.

20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.

 And so… Joseph was the first Stand Up Guy—he raised someone else’s son—and loved him like he was his own!
Sometimes… family is the people you choose—and it’s just as strong a bond as the family you are born into.
And sometimes—it’s even stronger!
You see those girls?
They are part of a blended family.
And yet—they are 4 sisters—they would step up and defend each other—because they are family!
Suzette, Amber, Gabby and Aliea—may not look alike, two brunette, two blonde—but they are the best kind of family!
They are the family you choose!
Their mom and dad, Jessica and Shane, love these girls like they birthed all four of them!
And they provide a safe and loving home for these girls to be nurtured and encouraged and praised and supported!
All the things you want from a family—all the things you expect from a family.
And that’s what they are—a family!
We spent the day with them, celebrating Christmas!
The girls love to do crafts, so I brought along stuff to make our own ornaments.
And everyone made one—even the guys!
The girls ever sharing and cooperating and laughing and joking and just loving one another.
They look at each other as one family—because they are.
As we gathered around to have our Christmas story—they got their bibles out and we talked about the Christmas Story.
I was so taken aback as I tied the Christmas story into the Easter story that I had taught them back in March.
One of the girls, Gabby, remembered the word Golgotha!
And another one, Amber, remembered the crown of thorns that Jesus wore!
And Amber went on to share that she had read about the birth of Jesus in her bible.
When we asked if they remembered what Golgotha meant—they yelled out “Skull!”
I said “that’s right! The place of the skull!”
So there we were—this blended family—who include my wife and me in their blended family!
Sharing the Christmas Story—and they represented a blended family just like the one Jesus had.
I wondered if Joseph felt that joy of knowing that he and Mary had built a life that loved a child that…
was not his blood, but… was his family!
Maybe you are a part of a family you choose.
That’s all that matters—they are your family of the heart!
And you would defend them to the end—because they are your family.
Just like Joseph did!

 Brother “A”

Send me an email—just as simple as selecting the link—Share your Reflections with me!
Share your blended family story!