Beliefnet
When Beliefnet asked our users, "Who's your most inspiring relative--and why?" we found out that lots of you have relatives who've moved you to tears, joy, laughter, and admiration. While many of the stories are about mothers and grandmothers, it seems there are also plenty of inspiring fathers, siblings, spouses, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and children out there. See for yourself what others have shared, and then, if you like, add your own story.

My most inspiring relative is my 15 yr old Autistic daughter! Everyday she opens my mind and heart to be more patient and understanding, to have a deeper trust in God. She makes me see that God has a purpose for us, he would not gave me the job of her mother if he thought I could not handle it and he gave me her as his angel and mine!
-- lisaflan

My husband! I just recently married him back in June but have known him for almost 3 years now. After getting closer and closer to him, I began to get my relationship intact with God. My husband has really lifted and given me encouragement along the way and I love him for it.
-- Malaysha

My Grandma W. on my Dad's side. I grew up in a home riddled with various abuse. When we would go out to Missouri from New Jersey for the summer I would stay with her for the entire six weeks. She loved me for me. She showed me what unconditional love could feel like. When she passed away when I was 12, I was devastated. I still remember all the wonderful times that she and I spent together. I believe that knowing her has made me be a better parent than what I had. Any goodness that I have in me is there because of her.
-- TedeBear

My mom. If it weren't for her and her pushing me to go to church when I REALLY don't want to, then I just might be out on the streets using drugs and pregnant by now. She keeps me in line and she can be a good confidant...sometimes. I can tell her some of my secrets and she'll give me advice.
-- Mormongrl

My Grandmother. She had less than an eighth grade education and began studying the seashells she collected with her children, becoming an expert on several shells and having a piece published in a scientific journal. She had been orphaned early, and family was extremely important to her. She spent time with me, cultivating my love of plants and the wilderness, inspiring me to a career as an herbalist.
-- ksvaughan

My mother. Having lost a husband and raising two kids all the while dealing with two brain tumor operations she still kept teaching and was happy. My mother was a very amazing woman.
-- breanme

My grandmother, after having a very tough life (alcoholic father and husband, living through the Great Depression) she has remained strong, faithful, and full of joy. Since her husband passed away 27 years ago, she has lived every day to the fullest. She has been my strength during my times of pain, and has raised me as her own daughter. Her love and laughter has inspired me to be joyful in life, and to always look for the light at the end of the tunnel.
-- ML52779

My daughter Breanna, age 7, is my inspiration. Breanna was born with congenital heart defects and has had 4 heart surgeries. Recently she was also diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver. Breanna has had a very rough road in life but seems to live life to the fullest. She has taught me so much to have faith in God and that God really hears and answers. Please see her prayer on the prayer circle and say a prayer for her.
-- steph4

My sister Linda. She keeps me lifted and motivated. We lost a brother, but we seem to keep each other happy and in each other's prayers with little notes with spiritual sayings.
-- elton

My grandmother on my mother's side. She had been in a wheelchair for 35 years before she passed away and she never once complained about pain or anything. She did the cooking and cleaning and made the best buttermilk biscuits you ever stuck in your mouth. She was always happy. It lets me and others know that having a disability is not the end of the world.
-- tammyg

My sister-in-law, Faye. In January, 1998, her 28-year-old son committed suicide. In August, 2000 she learned she had breast cancer and kept it to herself until September 5, because my daughter's wedding was September 2, and she didn't want to spoil 'her' special day. Through all of her tribulations her spirits were kept up because of her strong faith in God. When I learned of her having breast cancer she told me that if she could get through losing her son she could get through anything. She opted to have her right breast removed believing that her life was SO MUCH MORE valuable than her breast. She is truly an inspiration to me! I know God will bless her with many more years with us. Thank you for listening and sharing all of your stories.
-- msoileau

My grandfather was 87 years old when my grandmother's Alzheimer's started getting really bad. She made him promise that he wouldn't put her in a nursing home and he kept that promise. He would pull his chair up next to her bed for the last few months of her life at bedtime because she panicked if she woke without him. He spent those nights dozing with her hand in one hand and his rosary in the other. He was 95 years old by that time and fed and bathed and cooked for her for ten years before she died. He died about a year and a half later at his grandson's home. He may not have been a perfect person, but he was to her and he was pretty close to perfect to us.
-- julieemile

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