Author Archives: joythayer

I’m Sorry

I’m sorry for sabotaging my relationships.

I’m sorry for agreeing with fear.

I’m sorry for suppressing my voice.

I’m sorry for viewing vulnerability as weakness.

I’m sorry for self-protecting.

I’m sorry for hiding my heart.

I’m sorry I reject being loved.

I’m sorry I run when I should press in.

I’m sorry I have turned anger into manipulation & intimidation.

I’m sorry I have sought out my worth & significance in others.

I’m sorry I searched for affirmation rather than entering into praise.

I’m sorry I didn’t receive a compliment.

I’m sorry I focused on my flaws.

I’m sorry I wallowed in self-pity.

I’m sorry I purge my emotions rather than develop a renewed mind.

I’m sorry I let guilt in the driver’s seat.

I’m sorry deception stole the wheel.

I’m sorry I let hurt build up walls of resentment.

I’m sorry my aversion to pain became flaming arrows launched at those I love.

I’m sorry I kept people at arms length.

I’m sorry I searched for identity in what others thought of me rather than anchoring my spirit in truth & hope.

I’m sorry I didn’t say sorry sooner.

I Forgive You

To those who have hurt me over the years… I forgive you!

To those of you who made me feel small & inferior… I forgive you!

To those who made me feel ashamed of my femininity… I forgive you!

To those who made me feel unworthy of love, respect, & appreciation… I forgive you!

To those in my life who did not live up to their own standard of strength & courage… I forgive you!

To the ones who feared my opinions & personality and projected on me their own feelings of inadequacy… I forgive you!

To the many who felt threatened by my intuition & fluid nature, who shut down my ideas & rejected my methods… I forgive you!

To those who would make crass & vulgar jokes at the expense of my sexuality… I forgive you!

To those who entertained fantasies & avoided being present… I forgive you!

To those in my culture who have reduced me down to simply aesthetics or purely productivity… I forgive you!

For allowing you to devalue me in any way… I forgive myself!

I Have No Sandwich To Give

sandwich    Fourteen years ago I pulled away from our church parking lot following a van full of zealous Christians. Our mission was to save the lost and feed the hungry.  We met with a team to set out on the streets of San Francisco. When we arrived I was as excited and eager as was the rest of the crew. They separated us into little groups, armed us with socks, sandwiches and a few guidelines to follow, and sent us out to change the world.
It all sounded so epic. I sincerely thought I was going to be someone’s light in a dark place. I felt I carried significance, purpose, and vision to the “blind”. We walked the streets of Height and Ashbury. We painted a mural in a crisis pregnancy center. We ministered in the park. We worshiped in the city square. It was a rush to experience the heart of God for a city. I wasn’t even put off by the homeless lady taking a pee in the street as we shared the love of Christ with her boyfriend.
However, something caught my attention after a long night of providing essential items to those in need: I found most of them believed in Jesus. They were open to prayer. They quickly took our socks and snacks. They would say “Amen” and “God bless you”. Suddenly there were moments I felt like I was being manipulative. I was offering them something they needed (food and clothing). In a sense, they felt obligated to listen to my shpeal. I searched my heart, asking the Lord for clarification. Many of those to whom I was ministering sincerely believed in Christ. They were simply trapped in addiction, self destructive behavior, and brokeness. They didn’t need to say the sinner’s prayer again. While these thoughts were rolling around in my mind, I looked across the street where I saw the polar opposite of social status.
Beautiful women in long flowing gowns were getting out of limousines draped on the arm of good looking men in Armani suites. They were walking into fancy clubs, paying cover charges that would make my overpriced coffee blush. While they caught the attention of everyone around them, I found myself staring at them for longer and longer periods of time. My heart grieved. Who had their sandwich? Who could offer them a relationship and an experience with a loving God who cared for them? Who’s mission field were they? I broke inside. Money they had. Food was not an issue. Socks may as well have been disposable as far as they were concerned.
Yet like everyone else they hungered for something more. They were successful in every sense of the word. They had it made in the eyes of a material world. Yet, they were the poor in spirit. They could eat all day long and never be satisfied. They to are sad, depressed, and alone. They also battle addictions, self destructive behavior and brokenness. They too long for a love they haven’t known, a feeling of belonging, and a genuine acceptance beyond performance.
I went back to the hostile that night and balled my eyes out, “Lord, I have no sandwich for them.” I have nothing to offer them. Why would they listen to me? What do I have that they do not? They pity me, as if I am the one in want and need. I don’t remember sleeping that evening. I spent the whole night crying out to God.

His response to me was simple… I was their sandwich. He told me to be myself, do what I love, and work hard at developing my craft.  He reminded me of the words spoken over me my entire life, beginning when my mother was pregnant with me. She saw my name up in neon lights like a Hollywood sign. God told her I was going to be a girl and to name me Joy and that I would bring great JOY to this world. He reminded me of when I was an infant and the prophetic words my parents received about me saying, “Open your mouth and I will fill it.”
God then took me back to my childhood where my parents were on staff at the YWAM base in Maui. It was the performing arts base. Christians from around the world gathered there to collaborate on projects that would impact the world. I remember learning to sing, dance, perform on stage, and entertain a crowd. It was at that place that I learned to talk to God. At a young age He became my best friend.
As I grew up in the church many shunned my dreams, claiming my head was in the clouds. As both a child and a female I was taught to be seen and not heard. I suppressed my voice and my calling. I tried being a good Christian evangelist. I told everyone I could about the love of Jesus. I became a youth pastor and served as a small group leader. I put my heart into everything I did, yet God kept reminding me, I wasn’t fully alive unless I was being 100% who He created me to be.
After my experience in San Francisco I went back to school and got my degree in media communications. I began to take acting classes. I got an agent and I tried out for Esther in “One Night With The King.”  I cultivated relationships in the L.A./Pasadena area and I have been a faithful tortoise ever since, persevering in the belief God intends on using me to be a sandwich to those in the entertainment industry.
After my husband Matt went to ministry school, he and I have now served as volunteers for five years in the church teaching an overview course in film along with a good friend of ours. We have produced over two dozen short films and have held three film festivals highlighting the students work. My husband Matt has also illustrated 3 of Danny and Sheri Silk’s children’s books and Kris Valloton’s latest children’s book “The Ways of Royalty.” He also works at Bethel Media as our main source of income.
All the while we pastor about 75 people in the growing film community in Redding out of our house. We have continued to build relationships in L.A. and be actively involved in our children’s lives. Our personal short films have won multiple awards nation wide, and now we find ourselves at precipice. We are gearing up for the new rung of students and plan on taking their craft to a new level. We intentional teach them to be Daniel’s and Joseph’s called to serve those in Hollywood by making them look like geniuses. We teach them to not promote propaganda, but to become good at being visual storytellers.
Our goal is to make feature length films in the Northern California area. We intend on providing sustainable jobs and resources to those in our community. Though we do not feel called to faith based films, we do feel called to partner with the church to bring entertaining and meaningful stories to life. We focus on co-creating with the Holy Spirit, operating from an identity in Christ, and living as examples. Our company is called speropictures. The word spero comes from the latin term which means “hope.” Our brand is the tree of life. Our desire is to plant seeds of hope that reproduce wholeness.
We have made connections with our county’s development department, our local Film Commissioner, a performing arts studios, and several others who are partnering with us in this journey. We have also been building relationships with professionals in their field from sound, music, color grading, editing, acting and much more who feel the call of God to be doing their craft from Redding.
What we attempting do at the moment is seek investors, donations, sponsors, and other financing options so we do not have to be over extended by volunteering, working, doing family and making a films. Plus, some of what will be funded is equipment that our students would then have access to, thereby taking their projects up a notch as well.

– Joy


Lets hear about Kitty 9 Lives by @speropictures


Kitty is single

Kitty is eccentric

Kitty imagines life married to several different men she meets at a BBQ- all with hilarious result.


Kitty’s 9 Lives is a semi-romantic comedy and it will the biggest project to date to come out of Speropictures.

Written by our screenwriting team, Denise Churchill and Karen Alderidge, Kitty’s crazy whirlwind of a story is part Bridget Jones Diary, part Friends (TV Series) and part Zoosk commercial all wrapped up with a little Edgar Wright (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World) comedic style thrown in for good measure.

Whilst the casting process is still ongoing, the addition of Nicole Leigh in the title role of Kitty is a great move for the production.

More updates will be dished out pretty soon but for now you can head over to the official fundraising page HERE

FromPage2Screen will be speaking…

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How do you think it went?


In my mind the event was a huge success. Though the sound was off, the lighting cues were spotty, and the videos had a slight delay, we accomplished a major feet on May 3rd, 2014. As a community of people, we were in good spirits. We joined together and chose not to be discouraged. We had fun. We were entertained, and we laughed at the technical difficulties that we faced.

Not only had I poured my life into the 3rd Annual BSSM Film Festival this year, so many others did so as well. We all had high expectations. Some of which were let down.

So what happens when you put your heart and soul in something you believe so deeply in and things don’t turn out quite the way you hoped they would?

Such is life. Oftentimes we get so hung up on the pictures in our heads we forget to focus on all the things that go right. I volunteered countless hours in planning and preparing for this event for almost a year. I had meetings galore, emails in abundance, classes and deadlines. With all the organization and grace I could muster, I still lacked a certain amount of know how and structure. If I got anything out of this last season it is what not to do, from the numerous mistakes I made along the way. My personal failures have become a great teaching tool and therefore can be viewed a rewarding success.

When you have such huge aspirations and high standards, all you can do is dust yourself off and keep going. We are in the middle of a learning curve. I myself need to get better at learning to delegate to those with the gift and ability to take it on. So many people caught the vision I have been carrying and came under me to support it and bring it to fruition. I have had enormous amounts of grace and favor. There is no way I could have pulled off such a grand event without the passion of those who came along side and carried the burden with me.

I have been overwhelmed by the amount of love, encouragement, and belief people have in this vision. There have been countless numbers of those who desire to bring to life, excellence in the realm visual storytelling. All they have needed is a platform in which to jump off of. It has been my hope to be apart of raising up and equipping filmmakers to go into the marketplace and become successful.

We are accomplishing that goal!

The day after the event when I was feeling tired and deflated a good friend of mine who is a professional in our field said, “You guys are ambitious in trying to model your film festival after the most prestigious film festival in the world… “the Oscars””. You guys are doing an amazing job. Since then I have received tons of positive feedback as well as constructive criticism. What encourages me the most is the amount of people who have come up to me already hoping to be apart of next year’s track and festival.

Acknowledging that perphectionism is overrated, I understand we still have a lot to learn. I am also grateful that we are in an environment where we are safe to make mistakes and grow.

I can list so many things that went right this year: the musical performers were stunning, the motion graphics were awesome, the director interviews were outstanding, the student projects turned out so well, and the community of people grew as a whole. However, my favorite part was that we stood together and made the best of something with what we had to work with. And that my friends is all we can ask for.

If I were a super hero…

20140331-134856.jpg     If I were a super hero I would be able to fly. If I were a super hero I would be able to play with fire. If I were a super hero I would live in a palace in heaven. If I were a super hero I would be myself.

When my daughter Seraphim was required to come up with a super hero costume for a school project she and I began to dream together. We let our imagination free to create worlds, powers, and abilities that were limitless. However, it wasn’t until the night before the project was do that things got real. Panic set in as she realized we hadn’t actually put practical effort into the costume. We came up with all these ideas, but how to implement them was another thing.

Problem solving 101… I had been working on the computer when she interrupted me with the urgent news. No big deal, I thought to myself.  I am trying to be intentional about getting our kids to solve their own problems. I totally got this under control…

“How are you going to handle this?” I questioned, placing the responsibility on her to find a solution.

“We need to go to the store and buy a costume.” she looked at me with a “DUH” face.

“Cool, where are you going to get the money?”

A melt down began to proceed, whining and all. “How am I suppose to do this then? My costume is going to suck.”

I felt my insides unraveling as my impatience with her immaturity became apparent. Pushing aside my desire to get back to work, I knew I could use this as a teaching tool for growth. It was an opportunity to walk her through the process and allow her to take ownership of her homework.

“What things do we have around the house?” I responded with the utmost sincerity, again allowing her to own the problem.

Without saying a word, off she ran up the stairs. My eyes rolled as I felt irritation rising up. A few minutes later she returned to the office with a red sequined shirt in hand.

“I can be captain sparkle.” She said as she tossed it in the air allowing it to fall on my paperwork.

“What else are you planning on wearing with that?” I questioned with a snide tone.

“My jeans,” she replied.

I began to become frustrated with myself that I had allowed myself to become frustrated with her. I closed my eyes, took a deep breath, and respond the best I could.

“That is not a super hero outfit. What would your super power be if you were captain sparkle?”

Troubled by my response, she blurted out, “I don’t know. I don’t have anything to wear. We just need to go to the store.”

“I feel like that is the lazy answer. I need you to put some effort in here. What else could you do to make the costume more official?” I saw lights go on in her brain.

“We can look up outfits on pintrest.”

I started to feel relieved. At last we are getting somewhere. However, my stress levels returned quickly when I discovered the pintrest app on my ipad had been deleted and the battery was also about to die. GRRRrrrr. My hope was for her to be looking up ideas beside me while I continued to work on my computer. Now I was having to stop doing what I was doing altogether and help her out. The last thing I wanted to do was to make her feel like a bother, but she could feel my impatience growing as we sifted through the website.

“We can’t have logos either.” She popped off as we recognized some iconic emblems.

“That’s okay, you can make you own logo.” I attempted to explain.

Feeling misunderstood Seraphim took the opportunity to correct my ignorance by arguing that the teacher did not want any logos at all. My brain began to hurt as I fought off feelings of discouragement. I was going to use the initial intrusion on my time to become a teaching tool and now I was failing at everything. I am not getting work done, I am not empowering her to solve the problem, and I am causing more confusion than clarity. Instead of continuing on this route I simply gave up and was just going to call the shots.

“Please get out the craft paper.” I told her in angst.

“What for?” she replied, walking to the closet.

“Because I want you to.” I demand.

“Isn’t it alright for me to wonder what you are doing?” she said as she questioned my motives.

About that time, my husband who was also working in the office chimed in, “Why don’t you let her handle it Joy? It is her project after all.”

That was it. That was the straw that broke the camels back. “I am the worst mother ever. I am failing miserably. I suck. I can’t do this. I don’t know what I am doing. I am done.” all went through my head in a nano second.

“Seraphim, I need you to go out of the room while I gather my thoughts.” I said out loud.

My heart was crushed. I wanted to help. I wanted her to know she was important. I wondered why I had become so angry inside. I came to the conclusion… she is not a waste of my time. What the heck am I working so hard for anyway? I am working hard for her, for all our kids. I am working hard so they can be taken care of, because they are all important. In that moment I chose to stop worrying about work and focus on how to communicate “I love you” to her with my words and my actions.

First thing I did was look my husband in the eyes and share with him my heart. After he and I got on the same page I asked Seraphim to come back down stairs. I told her I was sorry for my shortness with her. After she accepted my apology, I asked her several questions trying to get her to come up with a super hero idea we could construct into a costume.

Finally, we decided on one. She was going to be the greatest super hero ever: A Seraphim is a fiery angel that reside in the throne room of God. They have six wings total. Two wings to fly with, two wings that cover their eyes, and two wings that cover their feet. They have the ability to see the glory of God and proclaim His holiness. They also have the ability to handle hot coals and cleanse the unclean. We decided she is already a super hero just by being herself.

Three hours later, one cut up old tee shirt, twenty sticks of hot glue, and countless paper feather cut outs, and viola. She had the coolest and most unique super hero outfit ever. She traced and cut out the stencil while I maned the hot glue gun. She and I laughed, bonded, and felt accomplished as we worked together.  It was time well spent. And while she ended up with her homework project completed, ironically, afterward I was the one that felt like a super hero.


Last But Not Least


It wasn’t an easy choice.

I remember being afraid mention it out loud. Did I really want what I was asking for? I wasn’t ignorant. I knew the cost, the sacrifices I would have to make. Yet, I began having dreams. A flame I thought was snuffed out long ago began to flicker in my heart. Excitement started to surface. However anxiety of the unknown would continually overpower any hope of lasting happiness.

What was this desire?

I wanted another baby.

I was embarrassed to admit that after 3 biological children, two step-daughters, one integrated daughter, and failed relationship attempts, I was contemplating having another baby. Not just mildly contemplating. My snoozing biological clock was ticking out strong desires to do so.

I can clearly remember conversations I had with God about this way before bringing it up with my husband. I gave God every reason, every excuse why this was simply a bad idea. How I wished I could just bury my fanciful side without killing apart of my person-hood! Never being one that’s afraid of telling me what I don’t want to hear, I heard God say, “Joy, you don’t have to do anything you do not want to.”

Like that really helped.

He’s God, for crying out loud. All I wanted was for Him to tell me what to do. He knows everything. Not to mention if anything went wrong I would have a scape goat, someone to blame my poor decision on.

The next thing I heard from God was, “Do you want to?” This only frustrated me more. Now I had to be deeply honest with myself. I had to admit to myself what was in my heart was good and not bad. It wasn’t unhealthy to want something so beautiful. God continued to expose the sand castles where my trust resided. He continued to reveal the truth. He showed me His thoughts, His plans, and His role in our relationship. Above all, He continued to emphasize this was my decision.

God refuted every sensible argument I could muster. How would we provide for everyone? It was God’s job to take care of me and my loved ones. What about all of my current responsibilities? How would I manage them while adding new ones? It is not my job to control my environment. What about my dreams? It is only my responsibility to live life to the fullest, giving it my all. Not mention, my dreams were His before He ever placed them in my heart. Finally I felt Him smile and say, “Seek ye first, and all these things will be added unto you.”

What did that mean??? To believe my wants and needs were going to be taken care of was hard for me. I felt it was irresponsible to place such trust in the unknown. I come from a hard working family, self-sufficient, who put a high value for earning everything you get out of life. Not to mention, this was contrary to what I learned in college. According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, you are to live in self-protection meeting your survivor instincts first, and up from there until you finally pursue spiritual enlightenment as self-fulfillment.

I left my conversations with God a little frustrated with the blank check He had given me. So, I decided to share my thoughts with my closest confidant, my best friend, the love of my life… My husband. Surely, he would set me straight with good ol’ fashioned logic. After all, he had a vasectomy from a previous marriage. We’d already come to terms with this, hadn’t we? I was delighted he was unable to have anymore kids when we first got married. I was extremely afraid of the idea of rearing them for a myriad of reasons, some of which included: I was a carrier of a malfunctioned gene and was already raising a severely handicap child. As I mentioned before, I had been in two major relationships, both of which failed dismally. This was hard on me as well as my kids. Pain avoidance became a central theme in my life. I also did not want any of our living children to feel or believe they were not enough, they were not loved fully, or that they would be replaced in any way.

So, I proceeded to present my longing with the full assurance he would bring me back to reality.

I should have known better going into the conversation. After all I married him because he was open to discussion and he wasn’t afraid of obstacles. And like Someone else I knew, he wasn’t afraid of telling me what I didn’t want to hear.

Contrary to my expectations, Matthew burst forth with elation at my aspirations. It saddened him deeply to not have any more children. He had a vasectomy to protect his ex-wife from a heart condition she would incur during pregnancy. He always regretted this decision, never quite feeling he was done having kids.

Still, I was conflicted. We had such a full house already. We were already referred to as the ‘Brady Bunch’. Yet I longed to have a child with the man of my dreams; one that was ours together, created out of our love for one another; one we would raise without having to share with anyone else.

So we finally decided go for it. Little did we know, this leap took us on a journey we very much did not anticipate.

After having saved up for vasectomy reversal, it took many months before I would become pregnant. Once we finally got pregnant, we had a total of three devastating miscarriages. I became hurt, discouraged, and frustrated. Here we thought we did not want anymore children and now we found ourselves fighting to conceive and carry to term. Heartbroken, I cried out to God. What was going on? I felt like the Lord communicated with me that we were up against a spiritual battle. One that did not value life. One that wanted to destroy life at it’s very core. The force we were up against was death. Whether it showed up in the form of infertility, abortion, or the mentality that children are in the way and a bother, it all stemmed from that same place.

Now, during this time, my sixteen year old daughter discovered she was pregnant. Though shame, guilt, and condemnation entered my mind for a brief moment, my internal being knew she was going to be a very good mother. After all, I did teach her well. I found my strength and hope in God once again. I encouraged her that she could face her fears, be great mom, and still remain true to her dreams.

Then a devastating blow almost ripped me apart. My third miscarriage wracked my body with immature labor pains. I had carried a blighted-ovum until the first day of my 12th week. I labored 1/2 the night only to deliver and empty amniotic sac. My body was in agonizing physical pain while my emotions were utterly numb. Yet I took comfort in the fact my daughter was still carrying my grandchild. It was not until we went to her OB appointment the next week that I discovered what she had been hiding from me. She had gotten an abortion the same day I suffered my miscarriage. We sat in our driveway having an intense three hour conversation. Despite our close relationship, we struggled to connect with each other during this time. I felt betrayed. I felt inadequate. I felt like a failure. I felt I had not passed on my values to one of the closest people to me. Meanwhile, she sat there feeling grief and remorse, all alone, misunderstood, and angry.

Matthew and myself were disheartened and even more confused. Should we  just chalk the whole thing up? Should we look into other options? Should we adopt? Should we try again? How should we best care for the children we already have? Besides our personal desires to have a child together, we were dealing with so many other life issues. This only made our choices that much harder.

Our character was tested. Our faith was tried. Our spirits had been crushed, but not broken. We found our strength, our hope, and our source through prayer. We found ourselves allowing the peace that passes understanding to be an anchor as our lives felt tossed on tumultuous waters. Through our trials we kept finding our peace, hope, and joy.

It was a relief when we discovered I had a problem with my thyroid and my progesterone. Finally, we knew what we could do to get pregnant and carry to term.

You can only imagine our delight after nine beautiful and long months, we were finally able to celebrate the entrance of our daughter Abigail into this world. A little after a year passed and we discussed whether or not to conceive again. Our other children were so far apart in age now Abigail would be raised as an “only child” in a few years. Again, we were faced with a tough, yet good decision to make. I had told Matthew it should be his choice as the choice had been previously taken from him in his previous relationship. After weeks of prayer and careful consideration of our lives in general, Matthew had come to the conclusion he wanted one final child.

We were intimate all of three times when another surprise happened. My daughter called and informed me she was once again pregnant. Freaking out, I put the stops to all intimacy protected or not. Though she was now nineteen, in a relationship, and had overcome a lot of trauma, she was going to need me.

Matthew was gracious, but did not understand my strong stand on the matter. As far as I was concerned, we were finished having kids. I was going to be a grandma. I was going to make sure this time I did not let anyone down. One week passed, then two. Though I was sad and felt a since of loss, I also felt a sense of duty to help my daughter.

Then my period became late. I tried to ignore it and regard it as stress. All the while I already knew the truth, but I convinced myself it was all in my head. I wasn’t pregnant. Grandmas don’t get pregnant. So, unlike my previous pregnancy tests I had always taken in front of Matthew, this one I bought at the store, took alone in a public restroom and planned on throwing it out with no-one the wiser.

The two blue lines showed up quickly. I was both excited and panicked. Instantly, I thought, “what is everyone going to think of me? How am I going to be able to handle all of this? Where are we going to get the extra finances to pay for the expenses?” My mind was swirling. I drove home in shock. When I pulled into the driveway my handsome husband was greeting me at the car door. I quietly slipped my fresh pregnancy test into Matthew’s hand and proceeded to the house.

Matthew looked down and instantaneously back up. “Is this ours?” he blurted out. A smile rushed over his face as he could not contain his happiness. He was not worried about all the concerns I was raising. He just enjoyed the fact he was going to be a father one more time. I however was not as eager to join the festivities. I did not know how to balance my feelings. Happy, overwhelmed, nervous, stressed, excited, and unsettled, I wanted to compartmentalize life. However, through this process, I have come to realize more than ever life can be hard. There’s no two ways about it. There are lots of pressures we humans experience. However, our character is shaped and formed by how we handle stressful situations. I no longer fear failure. I am now more concerned with failing to try. And though I remain imperphect, I do a heck of a lot of things right. My identity has become wrapped tightly up in what God thinks about me. I am also aware everything works itself out and often times we make life harder than it should be when we stress and worry.

With all that being said, it is with great JOY I announce the birth of our son, Matthew Isaac. His name means “God’s gift of laughter”. I am so glad God gave this young man to me. He is a promise I have carried in my heart for years. He also arrives as an uncle to my grandchild, Joshua James, who was born a week prior. For the first time in my life, I can say with full certainty, I have no unresolved desire to have any more of my own children.

I also know I will be the coolest Glam-ma on the planet.

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