Success comes from single parent homes with Joseph Humphries

Single parents are amazing and with Single Parent Day on March 21st, we want to highlight “Solo Parent Superheroes.”

 Robert Beeson, founder of Solo Parent Society, shares, “We do hear about the challenges and statistics that can come from single parent homes. The operative word here is can. It doesn’t mean it will come from single parent homes. In fact, there are hundreds, thousands of stories of people who were raised in a single parent home that have gone on to do incredible, world changing things.”

Here are just some of the people that have come from a single parent home and have gone on to have a huge impact on the world: George Washington, Franklin Roosevelt, Andrew Jackson, Teddy Roosevelt, Ronald Reagan, Barrack Obama, Kamala Harris (the current Vice President), Jim Daly (president of Focus on the Family), Michael Phelps, Justin Bieber, Tim Tebow(football player), Adele, Oprah Winfrey, Shaquille O’Neal, A-Rod(Alex Rodriguez), LeBron James, Elon Musk. There are so many more that go beyond this list as well.

When we talk about single parents, Robert shares, we often talk about the challenges, but you have to know that “some amazing stories have come not just from the single parent home, but because of the single parent home”. He points out, “It can be discouraged being a single parent. Carrying the weight of raising our kids and hearing the tragic statistics that come from single parent homes can compound the feeling of failure before our kids even leave the house. We can feel defeated but…we want to turn our focus towards a very inspiring story of what is possible coming from a single parent home. That is not just achievement in the world’s eyes, but being raised in a single parent home can actually have a profound effect on the cultural landscape as well.”

Joseph Humphries is the author of  book called, “From the Projects to the Boardroom:  A Little Boy’s Journey Out of Poverty Led by a God Who Never Let Go of His Hand”. Joseph has worked as a senior level executive and specialist in crisis management, turning around distressed companies. He completed executive programs and training at places like MIT, Sloan School of Management, The University of Wisconsin, and The Center for Creative Leadership, and he’s also served on many boards, as a deacon, elder, or advisory member, Joseph was also given an award from the governor of North Carolina for his service to the community. He’s been married for 34 years and has a daughter who graduated from Liberty University.

Joseph Humphries shares how he was raised by a God-fearing single mother back in the projects in Asheville, North Carolina. “My mom had the ability to support her children and let them know that, you might be in a tough situation, but don’t focus on where you’re currently at, focus on where God is taking you.”

Joseph says, “What really led me to write the book was many many years later, I was preparing to speak that Sunday, and all week I was just trying to put together this story that was a feel-good story. And I felt the Holy Spirit speaking to me saying “you need to share your story.”” But he was embarrassed and didn’t want to share that part of his life publicly. He had gotten to a place in his life that he had worked so hard to get to and he didn’t want to have to go back and tell that part of his story. And he really didn’t see why he should.

However, when it came time for him to give his speech, he walked across the podium and heard the Holy Spirit speak to him and say, “if this is about you, you share that story that you prepared but if this isn’t about you, share the story that you have lived.” So, Joseph shares the story he had lived, the same story he was embarrassed to share was the same story God used. After that message he saw God not only transform, but also bring healing, hope, and encouragement. He as amazed at how God could use his story and he knew it was time to write his book.

Humphries realized, “If God can help people like this, for hope, and healing, and forgiveness, I must share this.” And, he is serious about sharing God’s business, and no longer has any embarrassment. Instead, he shares, that he named his company 3C which was the number of his apartment in the projects. Humphries goes on to say that while he had not been listening to the Holy Spirit prompting him before, “In those 15 seconds of walking across the stage, God made it clear to him that to honor God, he needed to share his story which was really God’s story.  Joseph says, “It’s my story by stewardship, but Gods story by ownership.”

What became benefits or strengths to you later in your life that you drew on from being raised by a single parent?

“I would say my mothers’ faith”, shares Humphries. “It was unbelievable. Her faith was so powerful that it had the ability to overshadow the environment that I was in. There might have been sirens going on in the neighborhood, killing, and shooting, and I’ve seen all of that. I would also say not only her faith, but her commitment to her family.”

Joseph had seven siblings with him being the baby of them all. He had three brothers and three sisters. He goes on to speak about his mom saying, “She would work a full-time job and then on her days off, sometimes I would go with her, she would go clean up houses. And you know I was just seeing her work so hard. It was her faith and her commitment, not only to God first, but to her family.”

Joseph opens up beyond that powerful statement of the impact of his mom on his life to tell some more of the experiences with his mother who is now 90 years old.  When she was 87, he went home to visit her, and she spoke with him and apologized for not being able to give him much and that she wishes she could’ve given him more. He responded by saying, “Mom, you taught me the fear of God. You taught me to love Him. And I never went a day feeling unloved by you. What else is there for you to give me. I feel like I am a billionaire here. What are you talking about?”

Joseph Humphries wants to encourage the single mom and/or the single father out there by emphasizing, “Don’t underestimate the love that you have for God and for your children. It’s powerful. She could’ve given me so much material things, but I still might have failed, because the love and the commitment she gave me and the introduction to God and to fear Him and to obey Him is priceless.”

Looking back, what do you admire most about [your single mom]?

Humphries shares it was his mom’s faith, commitment, and sacrifice but, prominently, it was also that even at a young age he noticed how she tried to protect him and all her kids, even from pain. He said there were times she may have eaten less on some meals so her kids would have enough to eat, and he saw her having to walk to work with holes in her shoes, so her kids didn’t have to.

Single mom, and Solo podcast cohost, Kimberley shares God’s when her and her kids were in a small, 700 square foot apartment. Yes, it was small, but they have so many wonderful memories that her children constantly bring up from the time they lived there. It left lasting impressions on them. God showed up so much in those times and she wants to encourage single parents that they are doing okay even when they think they are not. Joseph chimes in to say, “Knowing what I know now, if I could go back, I would just love to hug my mom and say, “You’re taking care of me now but I’m going to take care of you later. And don’t worry because it’s going to be okay.””

Joseph goes on to encourage single parents to just “stay the course” and remember, “the words that you say to your children, they matter.” He later adds, “What you say to your kids will penetrate their hearts.” He remembers his mom speaking profound words and scripture to him and over him and seeing her praying for him on her knees when he was 8 or 9 years old. She would take a scripture and say to him, “Through Christ, you can do all things.” She would say things like “You can do anything, if you put God first.” Even to this day there are words that his mom would say to him that still penetrate to his heart. She said these things with sincerity and strong belief that left lasting impact on Joseph and that led him to have that same belief not only in God, but also in himself  - because of his mom, her truth, and faith in him.

His mom encouraged the dreams that Joseph had at a young age and used it as teaching moments too. Joseph shares that there are four ways we can use our influence as parents:

Four ways to use your influence as a parent:

He says that it’s hard to forgive. His mother never talked bad about his father, but It took him a long time to forgive him. Humphries makes the point that, “People close to you, hurt you the most.” His mother knew that for her kids to move forward that they could either be bitter or become better. “And for us to be better, we needed to forgive. You won’t get better unless you forgive.”
Humphries’ mom made sure they knew the value of themselves, but she couldn’t do that until she let us see that she understood and saw the value in herself. He says knowing your value is probably the most important influencer because of the impact it has on a child’s life. Joseph says, “Just because you’re in this situation doesn’t mean that God didn’t make you in his own image.” Know your value and share with you kids about their value.
You have to discipline your children. Humphries’ mom used to say, “I’m disciplining you now , so that you will know how to obey the authorities, because if I don’t discipline you, somebody that doesn’t love you will discipline you in a way that you don’t like.”
Praying and fasting
Joseph saw his mom continually kneeling and praying, time after time, and this has stuck with him. His mom would mention to him that she would fast for him and now he himself is fasting for his own daughter. He would ask his mom, “Why do you pray and fast?” and she said it was because some things would not change unless you fast and pray. She took time to explain it to him and reminded him when she fasted.

In closing, Humphries says, “I want to tell all the single parents out there, you may be pacing back and forth wondering if God wants you. I’ve got news for you and its good news. God wants you. He just wants you to come and jump right up on his lap, give Him a hug, and he want to tell you how much He loves you. And He wants to tell you that everything is going to be alright. You don’t have to pace, wondering if Jesus wants you. Because He wants you. And I got news for you, His arms are strong enough and His hands are kind enough and His heart is big enough and He just wants to give you a big hug. So, remember, He wants you.” Just as God impresses this message on our hearts, let’s impress it on our children’s hearts too.

For the first 100 listeners that respond to us (courtesy of Coke consolidated), we want to send you a free copy of Joe Humphries’ book, From the Projects to the Boardroom. All you need to do is go to There will be all the instructions there on how we will give it away.

A scripture to leave you with in closing,
Isaiah 41:10, “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Take it Further Action Step:
Which of the four ways you can influence your kids stands out most for you? Put it into practice this week or for the next month.

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