Websters Defines the word Pop in many ways but I have chosen to highlight the two that pertain to my post.
1. to go, come, or appear suddenly — <pop in for a visit
2. to strike or knock sharply
On January 29th, 2017, My Grandfather Donald Neeper Scarborough was laid to rest on what would have been his 94th Birthday.
The late afternoon service was held on a cold and rainy Sunday in Ft. Lauderdale Florida. I arrived 25 minutes early and, as I was about to jump out of my car, the rain came down harder. So I sat and waited for it to let up.
As I sat in my car, I had a bunch of thoughts come to mind and decided I better write them down on my iPhone’s notepad. I didn’t even really give much thought as to why or what I was doing as I typed words that seemed to magically show up on my screen. I just figured that they would be okay if I were to be asked to speak.
As the service began, old hymns were played (I was familiar with some of the first verses and chorus, but the remaining verses were a guessing game for me). A more contemporary Christian song was sung beautifully by Pop’s granddaughter. Then family members and friends came forward to share in their own words of Pop’s life and legacy.
Eventually my Father came forward and shared stories of my grandfather (the good student, the WWII Soldier, the entrepreneur, the traveling original door to door salesman, the strong man as Pop had an extraordinary physical strength, the Preacher, the Sunday School Teacher, the Author and the Poet) As my Father wrapped up, the Pastor, who knew they were pressed for time, asked if there was one person that had to share. I found myself up out of my seat and walking to the front.
As I stepped forward, I stated that it would be difficult to follow my Father. That was my way of letting everyone know who I was. I knew that there were many people in attendance who didn’t even know that my dad was Pop’s son.
I began to tell how I had reminisced about Pop, after his death and realized that I may have subconsciously followed in his footsteps.
Pop left home at 18 on an adventure, and I did as well. Pop bought a warehouse. I bought a warehouse.
Pop sold door to door as a salesman, and I delivered newspapers door to door. I then suggested that maybe those coincidences were just traits of those with an entrepreneurial spirit.
What followed was probably a little unconventional. But, bear with me by understanding that I was just being true to the words that I had just jotted down on the parking lot in front of the funeral home.
I said: Knock knock:
And they said: Whose there?
I said: Opportunity
They Said: Opportunity Who?
And I began … What do you do when opportunity knocks?
Are you opening the door or are you peeking thru the peephole and staying very quiet on the other side? Are you opening the door just a little bit? Or do you throw the door wide open and invite whatever is on the other side in?
In 1994, I had just graduated from high school and wasn’t quite sure what path I was to take in my life. I didn’t plan for college, but I was looking for adventure. Strangely enough, I had just recently started to truly trust God for his plan for me.
That knock on Pop’s door was me, an 18-year-old young man and the grandson Don Scarborough did not really know. But Pop opened the door wide for me and gave me an opportunity, and I am richer for it.
When I say rich it’s not earthly wealth I received. Anyone who knew Pop would know that this would never happen. It was, however, a wealth that cannot be measured. You see, I thought I was on a journey to be the next international male model. However, what I discovered was that God was setting my feet on a path to some of the richest relationships that I would ever have.
And, along the way, little by little, He was drawing me closer to Him.
I came to South Florida on my adventure but Pop gave me an opportunity to learn about business, to hear about his personal adventures as he pioneered early in his life as an entrepreneur himself, and more importantly to hear Gods word through his vast knowledge of the Bible. I would also physically see it as I sat in Denny’s restaurant on Oakland Park watching him wear out the carpet on his knees in prayer with his Gideon brothers.
As a young man, I was a sponge soaking up everything that was happening around me. I saw a man that had a tremendous mind for learning, who was driven with a spirit to work hard, and a faithfulness to open doors for those who were seeking.
I am thankful that Pop opened the door to me but I want to ask you this day … who is knocking on your door? Is it a family member, a loved one, a neighbor or …. is it God?
I encourage you to open that closed door because healing, growth, and life more abundantly are on the other side. I promise
you that Pop is in Heaven. There is no doubt in this. We have one less soldier on the mission field but please keep Pop’s legacy by being a light for Christ in the days to come
These were pretty much the words I wanted to share and when looking up the definition of the word Pop, I found it all the more fitting. Your relationship with God begins with Him knocking on your heart and I’d suggest you open the door and let him stay and not just pop in for a visit.
(Above) a photo of 4 generations of Scarborough men.
And if you were at all curious on the mention of being an international male model.
Well, I did give it my best shot!
One thought on “POP”
You wrote a wonderful tribute. He was VERY proud of you too.