My name is Addie and I was born in 1956 into a 100% Catholic community to Cajun French speaking parents in a very small secluded town located on the banks of the Bayou Teche. Not unlike most children, in my younger years, my whole world encompassed what I was familiar with, the Cajun French culture and Catholicism.
In retrospect, my first memories are of a highly volatile dysfunctional family unit of physical and verbal abuse with vague intermittent blurbs of minimal peace and happiness. I do not reveal this personal part of my life to disparage my parents, who simply did the best they could with what they knew, but rather to establish the reason for the inquisitive search I had for the God, which I always acknowledged existed even from my earliest recollections.
As the 3rd daughter of 4 children, I was the naturally more religious of all the siblings and enthusiastically participated in all the religious rituals of the denomination of my German and French ancestors. The local Catholic Church and cemetery, located directly across the road from our residence, became a constant refuge from the upheavals that were a weekly occurrence within our home. Although, it was by my early teens that I began questioning “the what’s and the whys” of the religion of my birth while slowly becoming aware that though I faithfully practiced all the required rituals, I had yet to come to know the true personal God I knew was my Creator, and who had sent His Only Son to die for me, a sinner!
For the next 4 to 5 years my spiritual questions multiplied while very few answers were forthcoming, and, eventually, much to my mother’s disapproval, resulted in my decision to discontinue participating in all the rituals of Catholicism. I did continue to attend Mass periodically to appease my mother but had lost my desire to know God and Jesus Christ, His Son through what I had come to realize was a vicious cycle of man made rituals and religion with no finality. Is this who God is and can no true truth be found? Believing the answers to be unknowable, I then gave up on my search for the One True God of my childhood and turned to the world for answers.
By the time I was 24, I was divorced and steeped in many of the superficial self destructive beliefs the world had to offer. I had, sadly, become a very selfish, enraged, self destructive, pro-abortion women’s-libber with many talents but no sense and even less direction. Going through life riding on monstrous waves of emotional highs and lows living on the very edge of self destruction, my life was literally out of control and all of my own making. It was at this deepest, darkest period in my life, I met my “love at first hearing”, singer/songwriter husband, Prentiss of, at present, 32 years, and providentially, I met his mother, a born again Christian, who as the Lord would have it, was a former Catholic! During the following 4 years of living through a severe accident nearly taking Prentiss’s life and the continuing highs and lows of my personal emotional turmoil, Prentiss’s mom took me into her home, and loved me when I was the most unlovable, as she patiently answered all my questions by opening…THE BIBLE!
In the Lord’s time, my coming in brokenness, with “the” true biblical understanding of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, I was born again in 1985, at the age of 28. I followed immediately in believer’s baptism and married, Prentiss, the perfect man “for me!” I can not express in words the joy that filled my heart, as it remains so to this very day.
I have since followed my husband to Nashville, and back home again, all the while consciously placing myself under biblical teachers and preachers. As my hunger grew to know more of the contextual understanding of God’s Word, I also set out to learn more about the Catholicism of my Cajun culture including finding the answers to my many long held questions. As I dove head long into research, availing myself to several foundational seminary courses and reading related books on Catholicism, Catholic Mystics, as well as, other diverse forms of religion, I also found myself investigating other various beliefs and movements, especially those with questionable and controversial teachings “claiming” to be Christian.
It was at the onset of the 1990s when I developed concerns about some pseudo-Christian beliefs and teachings, of which I had uncovered in my years of research, coming into once solid biblical churches, one of them being my very own little Baptist church. It was then I became aware of a purpose driven, emergent, postmodern, mystical infiltration which simply caused me to investigate that much deeper and wider covering more than 25 years of study.
Once again, in the Lord’s time and in His providence, this unquenchable drive has given birth to Discerning the Drift Teaching Ministry. God has, also, graciously brought fellow believers of like mind into my life, who are of great emotional and spiritual support. In this continuing life of sanctification, I finally have all my “necessary” questions answered and am looking forward to what the Lord has in store for my pilgrimage here and in eternity future.
All because of the Jesus Christ of Scripture, Addie
Ladies, God is still at work in the hearts and lives of His people, including yours! Would you like to share a testimony of how God saved you, how He has blessed you, convicted you, taught you something from His word, brought you out from under false doctrine, placed you in a good church or done something otherwise awesome in your life? Private/direct message me on social media, e-mail me (MichelleLesley1@yahoo.com), or comment below. Try to be brief (3-4 paragraphs or less) if possible. I’ll select a few to share on the blog another time. Let’s encourage one another with God’s work in our lives!