restoring mothers/daughters heartsIt’s almost Mother’s Day and I can’t help but think how blessed I am by the wonderful relationship with my mom. About two years ago, I sensed the nudging that I’ve come to know as God’s still small voice. Sometimes I’m more open to hearing than at other times! As I read my morning devotional, the author talked about how she had moved from her comfortable home of many years, relocating to be closer to her mother. What a beautiful picture of a mother/daughter relationship!

I immediately recognized the need for my mom, a widow for several years, to have family members live close by–especially as she turned 90. I wish I could say Randy and I sprang into action. It took almost two years to accomplish the daunting task of leaving our home and community of 20+ years.

But now we’re close to Mom–and we’re delighted to be here. I consider each time we’re together as a precious gift. We baked pies at Thanksgiving. We enjoyed Christmas with Mom for the first time in many years. Traveling the mountain passes in December made a trip to Mom’s almost impossible. Since moving here, we’ve gone to concerts and brought dinners to share–or just popped in for a cup of tea. It couldn’t happen when we lived more than 5 hours away.

I realize others haven’t been so fortunate. But no matter what your relationship with your mother or daughter is like, there’s always room for growth. I’ve been reading Blythe Daniel and Helen McIntosh’s excellent book, Mended: Restoring the Hearts of Mothers and Daughters. I’ve learned a lot from this mother/daughter team.

What I like about this book is that the authors are so authentic. Helen and Blythe are transparent in telling about their experiences as both mothers and daughters. Their point of view bounces back and forth between the two authors, the two generations. They say, to restore means not to ignore but to choose to make things new. Restoring the heart is a spiritual journey. They desire to help women learn to build bridges not walls, encouraging them to rely on the ultimate bridge-builder, Jesus Christ.

Topics include: considering ways you and your mother or daughter are the same and different, always choosing your relationship above being right, learning when to speak and when to be quiet, accepting responsibility for your part in the relationship, being willing to forgive, resisting the temptation to control or change the other person and much more.

In addition to Helen and Blythe’s personal experiences, they pack each chapter with practical ways to strengthen the mother/daughter relationship. Each chapter concludes with “Mending Thread” ideas of how to implement some of these changes. They also include “Making it Personal” steps to walk out these principles in your own life and relationships.

I appreciate the multi-generational appeal of this book. Helen reflects on her relationship with her mother. She also talks about how she interacted with her daughter, Blythe, during her childhood and adult years. Blythe brings the perspective of her relationship with her mother and her young daughters. They offer a rich legacy to this younger generation.

Mended is an excellent resource for any woman who wants to deepen her relationship with her mother or daughter and set a new pattern for going forward.

Cultivating relationships is always worthwhile–even if you’re like me and have sons instead of daughters. (Though I cherish my relationship with my daughter-in-law). As Mother’s Day approaches, I’m especially grateful for the joy of celebrating my 92-year young mom.

I’m excited to give away a copy of Mended just in time for Mother’s Day. Please leave a comment and I’ll include you in the drawing for a free book!