Author Spotlight: John Troyer

We are pleased to introduce John Troyer. John recently published Above and Beyond with us, which is now available through the Word Alive Press Bookstore, and everywhere fine Christian books are sold. We asked John to share a little bit about his new book and his writing. But first, a little bit about him.


John Troyer grew up on a farm in central Nebraska. He is the second oldest of ten siblings. His dad farmed a quarter-section, milked cows, and worked hard to support his family. They were always busy. Both his parents genuinely loved the Lord, and this was apparent in the way they lived.

John Troyer

When John was ten years old, his father was ordained as a pastor in their small Mennonite church. John listened to his dad preach many sermons about Jesus, but he always doubted. He couldn’t believe that God really cared about everyone. Maybe God cared about some people, but not him or his family. They were a bit different from others.

In 1953, when John was about three years old, his oldest brother contracted polio, which affected his left arm. About a year later, his sister, who was just younger than him, also got very sick, leaving her with brain damage.

Why would God do this? The question tormented him for many years, resulting in anger and rebellion that caused a lot of trouble.

Everything changed in the spring of 1968 when he was seventeen. He met Jesus, and the resulting peace totally changed his life. This peace was so real that John committed to follow the Lord the rest of his life, serving Him anywhere, anytime, and in any situation. A lifetime of adventure began and he has never had any regrets about following Jesus.

John graduated from Centura High School in Cairo, Nebraska and didn’t go to college. Over the years, however, he became a certified auto and RV mechanic. He also became a commercial pilot, flying on floats and skis in northern Yukon.

He has been in ministry for many years, travelling from villages along the coast of the Arctic Ocean to Central and South America. Since 2012, he has worked with Trades4Life in Belize, teaching trades and mentoring men. He has lived many years in remote places in the north, serving God’s people wherever they are. Currently he lives in Fort St. John, British Columbia with his wife Betsy. They have been married fifty-three years.

One thing that never, ever occurred to him was to write a book. The process started when he was fifty-seven and managing an RV dealership in Whitehorse. He suddenly realized that he wasn’t far from retirement age and had done nothing financially to prepare for it.

To add to the stress, he read in the book of Proverbs: “A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children’s children” (Proverbs 13:22, KJV). The way things were, he could only hope there might be, at least, an old worn-out screwdriver left to give his grandkids for their inheritance. Around this time, his older brother Galen called. John had been thinking he should have lived and organized his life like Galen had, since Galen seemed very organized and had lived and worked in Oregon all his adult life. There was silence on the phone line for a bit. Then Galen said, “Don’t ever say that again, because I wish I had done my life like you did yours.” This was surprisingly emotional for John.

That conversation changed John’s thinking. He realized that the best inheritance a good man can leave his grandkids is his testimony of faithfully serving God, trusting Him for everything we need.


Q: What event in your life inspired you to write this book?
A: After my conversation with Galen, I wanted to do something for my grandkids that would encourage them in life, showing them that Jesus is just as real now as He was when He walked with His disciples. I began writing, but after reading it back I would hit the delete button.

An event from eighth-grade English class always came to mind. I had written a story for an assignment and thought it was pretty good. But my teacher told me it was the worst thing she had ever read.

Thankfully, I have friends who told me to stop believing that horrible teacher and just write without judging it.

Shortly after this, I stopped hitting the delete button and kept writing about some of the events in my life. My plan was to put them in a binder and give all eighteen grandkids a copy. After a lot of encouragement by family and friends, I decided to actually publish a book.

Q: How is the topic of your book personal to you and why did you choose to share it with readers?
A: The title Above and Beyond is the best way to describe my life. I have personally experienced the goodness of God in so many ways, even in very difficult times. I share this story, hoping that others will find the goodness of God and know that He is real.

Q: Why should people purchase and read your book?
A: The Bible contains so many stories of miraculous events and I love reading them. The same God is alive and doing things today that are impossible for us to do. This book is meant to inspire readers to believe and follow this miracle-working God in the current generation.

Q: Explain two things you most want readers to walk away with after reading your book.
A: The first and most important thing is for them to know that God is not known through understanding philosophy or theology. He is known by His presence having an impact on our lives every day. The second thing is that readers should know God uses ordinary people, doing ordinary things, while giving the world around them an extraordinary view of God.

Q: Will there be a follow-up to this book, or has there been a precursor to it?
A: In November 2023, I published a 100-day devotional on joy entitled Real Joy for Every Day Life. I’m currently working on another 100-day devotional, this one entitled But Will You Follow? Its theme revolves around being more than just believers in Jesus who come to Him to get free gifts, then going away and forgetting about who gave those gifts. The purpose of this devotional will be to explore what it looks like when we give everything, including our own lives, back to Jesus.

Connecting Points

Connect with John Troyer through email at

Follow him on Instagram here.


  • Dad, your “all-in” life of serving Jesus gives you a powerful message to share. It is an honor and privilege to be a part of that life.

    Faith Gerber
  • Thanks for writing to us Dad, you have lived what you write. I and my family are indeed blessed to have you and mom as parents and grandparents.

    Nathan Troyer
  • Congratulations, John. Your life and story is an encouragement to us. I’m not surprised at all that an express purpose of the book was to encourage us. We love the devotional too! Blessings on any other projects to come!

    Steven Hesser
  • Thank you for sharing,John. Your honesty and love for Jesus is evident as an author and in how you live your life.


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