Filling an empty nest with joy

Live audio chat with Janet Hegarty, C.S.B.

In this chat, Janet reminds listeners to start with God and to see family members from His point of view. She says, "Respect the fact that God is leading your children." And when a family situation is tense, Janet references Jesus' ability and instruction to forgive—she says "hatred from children [or any family member] cannot be their true nature." Janet offers the comforting message that when the next step seems unclear, "there is something greater going on than what appears to be on the surface." What God is doing is the reality, and as we put our hand in His and rely completely on Him, this reality is seen in our lives.

Questions asked during the chat include: How can you find ways to fill the time? How do you listen for God's direction without an agenda? How do you keep thoughts off the sadness and find healing? In addition to questions about children leaving the house, listeners also asked how to pray about an empty nest because of divorce, the passing of a spouse, and estranged family members, and how can parents pray about the financial burdens concerning adult children who are unable to leave the nest because of lack of jobs and opportunities?

In each answer, Janet points the questioner to the fact that they are not separated from God, but as the Bible says, "live, move, and have their being" in God.

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