As a songwriter, Jessica Connelly knows the power of words: their influence over our actions and their connection with our emotions. That’s why she loves the Bible — God’s written Word — and why she’s passionate about seeing it made available to everyone.
When Jessica got married, she and her husband agreed that they shared a love for international missions. Together, they searched for opportunities to take the gospel to the nations, eventually accepting a role in their home church in Alabama as advocates for a South Asian country.
Their plans for travel to that country led them to take Wycliffe’s Perspectives course (a fifteen-week exploration of God’s vision for individuals in global missions) when it came to their church in the fall of 2017. At Perspectives, Jessica and her husband met a missionary who described the need for Bible translation in the very country close to their hearts!
“You know when the Lord communicates something and you’re just hearing it from all different areas?” Jessica said. “That was the first time that I really zoned in on Wycliffe.”
After Jessica and her husband finished Perspectives, they were even more interested in missions and translation, praying specifically about how God wanted them to contribute. But they were also sick, with a terrible bout of the flu. “It’s the sickest I ever remember being. We couldn’t eat, couldn’t drink.”
As a pregnant Jessica tried to take care of her husband and young son, she kept her focus on God. “I put on worship music and kept reading his Word, over and over, repeating his Word. It was the only thing that was keeping me sane!” Throughout the sickness, as she recited verses of peace and comfort, Jessica remembers, “I kept seeing these visions of an old man. And he was sick, just as sick as we were, but every day. He was lying on the ground, and there was no one to take care of him. And he didn’t have the Word of God to comfort him, to give him strength, to have hope in.”
Jessica knew that God was showing her his heart for Bible translation in a powerful way. “What got us through that sickness was God’s Word. His Word is my food. His Word sustains me. His Word is my refuge. His Word is my comfort. So I have compassion for people that don’t have that.”
Following this prompting from God, Jessica and her husband began giving to Wycliffe, knowing that their gifts would join those of many others to impact translation projects around the world — including the South Asian country they are so passionate about.
Now Jessica uses her own words to describe the wonder of God’s Word, penning songs about the power of the Bible in her life. And she’s dedicated to alleviating the global need for translated Scripture. “I want to give more! I definitely see fruit. When something is translated, it’s one piece. But it’s multiplied for the thousands — the millions!”