What we are exposed to as a child and even into our adult years greatly impacts our brain. Understanding this is key when it comes to battling pornography. In this episode, Josh Spurlock, founder of MyCounselor.Online, shares the concept of “Whole Brained Sexual Purity” and how understanding the distinct roles of our left brain and right brain provides us with practical steps for walking in sexual purity.
Key topics covered in this episode:
“Whole Brained Sexual Purity” article: https://mycounselor.online/whole-brained-sexual-purity/
Josh Spurlock is an Ordained Minister, Certified Sex Therapist, Licensed Professional Counselor, and serial entrepreneur. His passion is seeing people experience fullness of life, joy, and longevity in the purposes God has created them for.
As the founder of MyCounselor.Online, Josh leads a team of clinically informed, faith-based counselors who provide care for the body of Christ, specializing in work with families in ministry through online therapy. You can connect with Josh on social media at @talk2spurlock.
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Karen Potter: hello, and welcome to this episode of the Covenant eyes podcast i'm your host Karen potter joined by my co host brandon Clark, and we are so excited to have you join us for this exciting conversation.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: yeah we sure are, and if this is your first episode, let me just tell you a little bit about this podcast we like to talk about some tough topics here like pornography.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: But the great part is, we have a wide array of professionals and experts in their fields each week who share must have resources tools research everything you need to battle against pornography.
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Karen Potter: And just a moment we're going to get started with today's amazing gas, but I do want to let you know that we want to hear from you, so if you can shoot us an email at podcast at covenant eyes calm and give us feedback your thoughts.
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Karen Potter: ideas for topics for the future anything we want to hear from you, so please reach out.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: yeah absolutely and then the other thing we want to let our listeners know today is that we have a free 30 day trial of the Covenant eyes software just for you.
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Karen Potter: Thanks brandon now for our topic for today, this is going to be an exciting one, so our topic is.
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Karen Potter: Well brained sexual purity that's a mouthful right there um and it is to help us dive into this topic, a little bit further we've actually brought an expert to talk about this topic josh spurlock spurlock right.
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Karen Potter: It did I get that right.
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Karen Potter: All right, perfect is our special guest today he's an ordained Minister a certified sex therapist a licensed professional counselor and a serial entrepreneur, so that is really exciting is.
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Karen Potter: People and seeing people experienced fullness of life and joy and love get longevity and purpose that God has for them.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: yeah and if that's not enough he's also the founder of my counselor online where he leads a team of clinically informed faith based counselors.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: who provide care from the body of Christ specializing in the work with families in ministry through online therapy, you can connect with him on social media at talk to spurlock so we're so glad to be able to welcome you in josh thanks so much for being on with us.
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Josh: Here and brandon so glad to be here love what you guys do was excited when I got the email asking if I can join so glad to be with you today.
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Karen Potter: josh we're really excited about this topic so whole brained sexual purity what is meant by this, and how does it change the way we think about sexual purity.
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Josh: Well there's a there's a movement that's happening right now that God is doing in this church, I think.
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Josh: That is around thinking about life more holistically and thinking about our biology this body that God has put us in more holistically.
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Josh: The it's a recognition that the author of our nervous system and the designer of this body is the one in the same that the author of scripture.
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Josh: And that the wisdom that he deployed in building us is the on inspiring wisdom that the song this talks about it says man i'm fearfully and wonderfully made and just going, and all of what you have designed here.
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Josh: And that, when we study the realities of this design that God has given us that what we find is always consistent with the scriptures.
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Josh: And that there's value that we can glean from understanding how he's made our body, including our brain and how that understanding can inform our discipleship in our spiritual development in our growth.
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Josh: got a great dialogue and work between Dallas willard and Jim wilder and the other half of church and renovated, and some of the resources that kind of explore this.
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Josh: intersect of neuroscience and theology, and so, when we talk about whole brain sexual purity we're talking about is allowing that understanding of how God designed our brain and our nervous system, to inform how we approach sexual purity.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: And this is so good, so you actually wrote a article about this topic, which will be able to share our listeners can go to a podcast page and find that later.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: You know, in that article you discuss a term called character structure, I wonder if you can speak a little bit to that and talk about what you mean.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: When you say character structure.
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Josh: Yes, so in the scriptures it talks about you know teaching our children, the ways of the Lord as we, as we walk in the.
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Josh: In the courtyards and in our comings and goings and our risings in our settings that we're building into our children character structure like.
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Josh: Through the experiences of life that we have and the brain structures that God built into us to encode that character structure.
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Josh: function through the right brain the right hemisphere of our brain it's before our left brain is even fully developed and functioning even before we have language.
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Josh: The right hemisphere and right brain what we think of is right brain functions are operational and we're taking in information we're taking in experiences in those.
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Josh: That information and those experiences that we're having our structuring the way that we understand ourselves.
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Josh: The way we understand the world that we're in how we understand our relationship to other people how we understand our relationship with God all of those structures that become the lenses through which we see the world and our playbook that we pull off the shelf to know how to navigate.
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Josh: Experiences in life are all cumulatively what we think of our cause character structure encoded through the right hemisphere of our brain.
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Karen Potter: So, how does knowing about this character structure impact the person's journey from freedom from pornography.
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Karen Potter: Because a lot of our listeners may be battling pornography addictions and and or we have also pastors and leaders that are on the on the podcast today really hoping to help people in their church.
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Josh: Yes, yes, so the key pieces understanding that our character structure and those right brain functions really.
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Josh: modulate or control and are the place from which are automatic responses flow from and that the automatic responses that we have to experiences in our life stimuli in our life, whether it's a.
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Josh: A pornography trigger or thing that will kind of lead us down a pathway towards engaging pornography.
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Josh: or anything else in our life, the automatic response that we have to stimuli in our environment flows from that right brain character structure and so.
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Josh: If we're going to change that we've got to approach it differently than we do and have left brain tactics now where I left brain is kind of facts and data and information it's language our brain processes things through that.
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Josh: kind of aspect of our brain it's where our our sense of willpower and intention and if i'm going to kind of will my way through you know not eating a chocolate donut.
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Josh: That willpower is going to come from my left brain kind of functions, but that piece that's going to be driving that craving that need to reach for that chocolate donut is coming from a right brain character structure and so.
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Josh: Both strategies of implementing my willpower and learning and having information to knowing what the scriptures say and having accountability and all of these really important and valuable things are supported by.
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Josh: Changing the character structure that exists in our right brain in the strategies together and allow us to have a freedom that's not characterized by just like clinging and fighting rustling so hard, but as more.
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Josh: flows more automatic and more naturally from our right brain character structure.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: This is so interesting because I think about our nine year nine month old daughter right and I watch her just kind of go about each day.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: and develop and it's just constantly taking things and taking things in processing processing, you know, I wonder if you can say a word to parents about this development and how it's really important to watch what our kids are to are exposed to, as they are just quickly developing.
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Josh: salute Lee you know at that, at your daughter's age, you know she's taking in the world, almost exclusively through her right brain.
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Josh: Like that developmentally brain structure wise, the Left brain functions are not even online and developed yet and so she's absorbing you your presence, your love.
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Josh: and her environment around her straight into her right brain character structures and she didn't even have kind of that gate.
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Josh: in place that we have as adults with a fully developed left brain where we can kind of gauge what we let in and we don't let him and so.
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Josh: she's really dependent on you and on the parents in her life to protect what is coming into that right brain and influencing.
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Josh: Those that character structure, because she doesn't have the ability, she didn't have the brain capacity, yet to be able to gain that content and evaluate what's good or not good to bring into herself at the stage it's critically important.
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Karen Potter: Well, so interesting hearing you talk about that, because in our work, you know, helping people overcome pornography addiction so many of our early Traumas from our early childhood, you know impact, a lot of the behaviors that we have as adults.
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Karen Potter: yeah so you know just.
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Karen Potter: hearing how that you know the brain develops and things that's really, really powerful so as people think about sexual purity do you have some practical steps that people can take to really kind of help them walk in sexual purity.
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Josh: Yes, absolutely.
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Josh: In the reality is that the practical steps that will aid in sexual purity will in a lot of other aspects of life also.
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Josh: One of the schemes of our enemy is to relational isolate us from other people.
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Josh: Because it's in our love for one another and it's in our attachment in connection with one another, that we encourage one another, strengthen one another, build each other up.
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Josh: In that character structure change happens now that it's a character structure is formed in a relationship contacts in Germany between parents and child and developing.
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Josh: And it's changed it's transformed and don't put through relational connection and that's the the targeted and strategic work of the enemy that works to.
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Josh: Through shame isolate us from genuine connection with other human beings that could be conduits of god's grace into our life and situation and be transformational to us.
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Josh: And so much of the strategies that we're thinking about in terms of right brain strategies are really about.
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Josh: Engaging our emotional experience of life so there's this emotional tomb emotional intelligence which are right brain kind of functions.
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Josh: And relational components so having an attunement and a connection with self, and then we connect in a genuine way in an authentic way with another human being.
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Josh: And those experiences allow for transformation within our experience, and so it moves beyond just accountability, where there's behavioral kind of report and around.
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Josh: kind of structures that help that gate regarding what's coming into our heart and our mind and protecting or.
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Josh: Holding one self accountable with another person, but to also really connect in a vulnerable way and allow the transformational love and acceptance of Christ, to be felt through the eyes and the voice in the face of another human being, who can be Jesus with skin on to us in a way that.
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Josh: fades away blows away the sense of shame that the enemy is looking to isolate us with and allows us to be held.
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Josh: In a way, that can confront and address the lies that the enemy has worked into our lives and into our character structure and transform that, in a way that is felt inside.
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Josh: And moves as bridges us beyond this place where you hear people say I know.
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Josh: Jesus loves me I know these things I know this pathway leads to death and destruction and isn't helpful and yet I can't seem to not go down that road, or I don't feel.
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Josh: That Christ loves me I don't feel the love of God, even though I know it it's those relational right brain strategies that bridge that gap and move it from the knowledge into the felt experience of transformation.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: I love, how you put that is just so well put you know, and I think about.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: The spiritual aspect you're mentioning right and we do have a lot of church leaders who listen in to hear about resources and the research and everything like that.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: And one of the things that I think about is and not to downplay spiritual and the work that the Lord can do in our lives in any way.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: But often it's not just a spiritual solution right, and I wonder if you can speak to that for our church leaders of understanding the physiological side of us, and how that place, together with the spiritual like it's a both and isn't it josh.
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Josh: hundred percent.
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Josh: But I would want to tweak the paradigm just a little bit into suggest that there's not a duplicity that's there that recognizing the reality of god's design in the body and.
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Josh: Engaging discipleship in a way that's informed by god's design is a no way, not a spiritual practice right that it's simply acknowledging the reality of what God has wired into our body.
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Josh: That it's an act of wisdom and worship, to acknowledge god's design in what he's authored in our nervous system and so it's not a.
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Josh: spiritual engagement and kind of practical medicinal medical biological engagement as though the authors of those two domains are different.
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Josh: But instead recognizing that God is the author of both domains, and that it is a spiritual engagement to recognize what God has designed in our body and to honor the design that God has wired into our body in a way that allows transformation and healing to take place.
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Karen Potter: that's beautiful and I appreciate that, thank you for making that very clear because oftentimes the two seem to compete with one another and in all actuality they're from the same source, you know.
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Karen Potter: they're.
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Karen Potter: Just made us incredibly you know complicated beings and.
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Karen Potter: All yes united stuff i'm just super glad to hear you say that.
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Karen Potter: So you know there's so much we have such a limited time here with you today, but I know that people are going to want to learn more about this topic and more about the services and.
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Karen Potter: opportunities to work with your organization so where can they go what resources do you want to point them to so they can get engaged.
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Josh: So there's some great resources that you can read you know I authored an article that's out there, that you mentioned earlier whole brand sexual purity.
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Josh: That can introduce to some of these thoughts folks and kind of access their website there's also some other wonderful authors.
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Josh: That if you're a reader out there, your pastor out there, this neuro theology and kind of understanding god's design of the body, if that.
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Josh: Piques your interest you like hot when I learn some more about that would really recommend Jim Wilders resources, again I mentioned renovated, which is a dialogue between Jim wilder who's a.
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Josh: neuro kind of a neuro theologians what he calls himself he's a psychologist and Dallas willard as they kind of discuss discipleship and understanding the interplay.
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Josh: The other half of church is another great resource that kind of talks about the implications for discipleship and the Church of understanding the the right brain and how it functions.
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Josh: there's a great book called unwanted that does a really good job, a distributor and understanding how specifically in sexual addiction and pornography struggles are.
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Josh: experiences of life and trauma and life can influence the struggle that we have and that's how healing and that character structure can change how we experienced those struggles.
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Josh: And then, if people are wanting to connect with a counselor somebody to come, alongside them in this journey.
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Josh: We would love to serve them in that capacity my counselor online has a team of 40 something therapists that are all trained to work from this whole brain model and character change structure.
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Josh: approach to doing therapy and can connect with folks online from their phone and computer anywhere in the world, and so that people don't have to go through this alone they're going to have some going to come, alongside them and and really help guide them.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: yeah josh will definitely be able to post my counselor online link and then the article mentioned, as well as a couple other things.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: On in the show notes for this podcast so if you're listening and like are scrambling to find a piece of paper and a pen don't worry.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: You can you can always find those in the show notes josh thanks so much for being on with us, this has been.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: Really insightful and honestly it's an area that I don't think is talked a lot about so it's one it's really great to talk about it, but to to to good to hear that there's really a movement developing of the holistic approach to healing.
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Josh: Yes, i'm excited about it Jesus he's building his kingdom and bringing healing and people and it's fun to be a part of that and it just so much respect for you guys and your role in that as well.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: amen thanks again and a reminder, if you enjoyed this conversation.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: Please spread the word it really starts with you, you know and sharing these things with others and building that movement that josh is talking about.
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Brandon.Clark@covenanteyes.com: So you can leave us review, you can subscribe wherever you get your podcasts to be sure to get the latest episodes that we bring you each week and you can also drop us a note with your thoughts and feedback by emailing podcast at covenant eyes.com that's podcast at covenant eyes.com.
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Karen Potter: Thanks brandon and one final reminder to everyone, listening to the podcast that you can still take advantage of that free 30 day trial of covenant eyes, so please visit our website at www covenant eyes calm.
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Karen Potter: enter in promo code free podcast and experience freedom from pornography, using the Covenant eyes software, we thank you all for joining us today josh Thank you so much for being here brandon this has been great until next time everyone have a great day.