Catherine’s family. Photo by Ronni Paxton.
Download the sheet music and listen to a recording of children singing Catherine’s original song: “My Mind’s a Sacred Place.” (Copyright © 2015 Catherine Doxey White. This song may be copied for incidental, noncommercial church or home use.)
Today’s guest author Catherine is mother of five children ages 6-21. Catherine loves to sing (very loudly and occasionally off-tune), scrapbook, read, and write. She has written a few songs, from the silly to the sacred. Catherine writes:
About half-way through his mission, my oldest son wrote home and said, “Whenever I have some kind of temptation or negative thought, I just think of punching Satan in the face.” I’m a pretty non-violent kind of girl, but I have to admit that when I acknowledge how aggressively Satan is targeting our young, innocent children with pornography, all my mama bear instincts kick in and I want to launch a full-scale offensive attack. Just thinking about Satan’s attempts to envelope our children in darkness and isolation while twisting their view of love, robbing them of self-worth, and ensnaring them in addiction transforms me from a peace-loving pacifist into a wanna-be sniper. I want to take Satan out long before he has a chance to pollute the minds of our precious children.
“My Mind’s a Sacred Place” is my attempt to arm our children with tools to defend themselves against accidental exposure to pornography. Pornography statistics have haunted me ever since I first heard that the average age that a pornography addiction starts is now age 11. I was even more shocked to learn that about 85% of pornography contains violence, making pornography a world public health concern. It is unfortunately no longer a question of whether or not youth will encounter pornography; 100% of today’s youth will be exposed to pornography in some form.
This concerned me so much that I spent the next year and a half studying how to combat pornography and use the Atonement to overcome addiction. As I learned about some of the simple yet effective ways to protect our children, I thought, “Someone should write a Primary song to reinforce these ideas.” I did not expect that someone to be me, until I woke up one morning with the melody and lyrics of “My Mind’s a Sacred Place” running through my mind. The song came so easily that I humbly recognized it as a gift of inspiration from our Heavenly Father. I felt an incredible sense of urgency to share the song, and prayed for guidance with the accompaniment. My talented friend Andrea came to the rescue as a direct answer to my prayers, writing the accompaniment, improving the melody for the verses, and co-writing the lyrics for the third verse.
“My Mind’s a Sacred Place”
There is a battle raging on;
It’s a fight for right or wrong;
It’s a war for my own heart and mind.
Evil traps are drawing near;
Bad pictures can appear
That steal the peace the Spirit helps me find.
Chorus: I’ll turn it off; I’ll walk away.
I will sing, and I will pray.
I will turn to my own loving Savior.
I know my body is a gift,
And my mind’s a sacred place.
I’ll be clean;
I’ll seek light;
I’ll choose the right.
Verse 2: Temptations come to look again;
I won’t look; I won’t give in.
I’ll talk to my mom or my dad.
I will run or play or read;
I’ll help someone in need;
I’ll focus on the good and name the bad.
Verse 3: When I’m tempted on my own
I don’t have to feel alone;
I can talk to my Father in prayer.
I’ll tell leaders who can guide;
It’s my mind; I can decide
To fill my thoughts with light and truth to share.
I pray that we can teach children to follow the counsel to automatically “turn it off and walk away,” and turn to the Savior. Rather than visualizing ourselves punching Satan in the face or getting him in the scope of a long-range rifle, we can use this song as one more piece of armor to invite the Spirit and give children the strength to “be clean, seek light, and choose the right.”
For sheet music, a recording of the song, acknowledgments, more resources, and more information about Catherine (author of the lyrics) and Andrea (composer of the music), click here.