Is there someone in your life that has had a lasting positive impression on you? Not your parents or that special teacher. Just someone you encountered, and they changed you.
Miss Iris is one of those people for me. She had been given the moniker of respect – “Miss” – long before I met her. We went to church together. She played the piano. Well, she didn’t just play the piano. She brought it to life with zeal and gusto. It fairly rang when she sat down to play. You could almost hear it sigh in relief when she hit the last note because she had touched nearly every black and white on the keyboard! It was amazing to hear her prepare us for worship with the prelude and when she hit that first note of the song, you couldn’t help but jump to your feet and sing along.
She was infinitely patient, giving piano lessons to the young and old alike. Age made no difference to her. She had no doubt that anyone could learn to play the piano because, after all, she could do it. She was not only patient; she was genuinely humble. She saw nothing special in her talent, though it was, in fact, great.
Miss Iris was one of those women who didn’t go to church to be seen but because she believed it was her duty to God to do so. She could quote scripture with the best and was often asked by someone needing a quick reference just where in the Bible it said what. She could tell you. Not only could she quote the Bible, she had internalized the words and knew their meaning and, most importantly, lived by them. They were her compass when things were good but also when things got difficult. She could tell you stories about how The Word had helped see her through tough times, when she wasn’t sure how she would survive life’s troubles.
She was a widow long before I met her and that had been a struggle also. People do not always understand how difficult it is for a woman who had devoted her entire life to her husband and her children to suddenly find herself alone. But she was never alone. She had her friends and she had her God. Her faith was strong. As she grew older and her health began to wane, her faith never wavered.
Iris loved seeing the Church full of young people. Babies crying and young children talking out of turn never seemed to bother her. It meant the church was alive and growing and would continue after people like her – old people – were gone. That was important to her.
She played the piano until she could no longer physically sit on the bench to play. She gave it up graciously. She was gracious in all things.
We still miss her and her sweet ways. I occasionally hear someone remark, “I wish Iris was here. She’d know (fill in the blank).” She was a font of knowledge. My advice, trite though it might be, is: Listen to the people around you before they are gone. They know more than you think!
Miss Iris gave everyone who knew her a great legacy in her music and in her friendship. She was a good, sweet, kind and honorable woman that is remembered with love. What more could we ask for in our own lives? Many of us aspire to be like Iris. I’m afraid many of us fall short.
Do you have someone who has touched your life in such a positive way that you will never forget them? I know I do.
Now, something from Iris to me to you. I think of her every time I make it.
Miss Iris’ Famous Egg Salad
Hardboiled eggs, peeled and chopped
Mayonnaise, just to soften
Chopped green onions (optional)
Chopped green olives with pimentos (as many as you like! I like a lot!)
Salt and Pepper to taste.
This is yummy just the way it is, or you can add, as I do, chopped fresh parsley.
Miss Iris brought these little sandwiches to many church socials and we all loved them. Enjoy!