I Want to Escape: Reaching for Hope When Life is Too Much

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Rush Witt
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When life overwhelms, it’s natural to try to get away. Escape holds a powerful allure amid hard times. In every season, a myriad of pressures, challenges, regrets, and disappointments plague our lives. These trials and tribulations often provoke us to cry, “I’ve got to get outta here!”  

Even though we have many good reasons for trying to escape, as Christians, we have even better reasons to depend courageously on our Savior in the ups and downs of life. Pastor Rush Witt helps us learn to bravely run to Christ instead of running away.  

I Want to Escape explores the reasons why we so often want to run and offers hope-filled direction to experience Jesus’s grace and mercy to comfort us and lead us on a better path. You will learn to recognize the classic signs of escapism: denial, distraction, self-destruction, and thoughts of death and to instead take the path of courageous dependence on Jesus, who remains closer than a brother even when we’re ready to run. At the very center of Christian courage stands not a principle or a system, but a Person who intimately knows each one of us.  

I Want to Escape is part of the Ask the Christian Counselor series. This series walks readers through their deepest and most profound questions. Each question is unpacked by an experienced counselor that gives readers the tools to understand their struggle and how the gospel brings hope and healing to the problem they are facing. 


Rush Witt, MDiv, DMin, is Lead Pastor of Paramount Church in Bexley, Ohio and a certified biblical counselor. He is the author of Diehard Sins and I Want to Escape. Rush and his wife, Kathryn, have three daughters and two sons. 

3 Reviews

  • 5
    How to live in Christ when we would prefer to escape

    Published by Wendy on 11 06 2022

    We all have a tendency to avoid the challenges of life and to choose what seems to be an easier path. Witt is honest and compassionate as he explores the many reasons and ways we try to escape. Yet, he calls us to a better way - a courageous dependence on God in midst of our challenges.

    He proposes a three-fold plan moving forwards: pray with humility, believe with gospel hope, and act with courageous dependence. This plan is applied over following chapters to the four main escape routes that people take: denial, distraction, deflect & destroy, and desiring death.

    Witt finishes with the reminder that “after darkness, there is light”. We have hope in Christ, he walks with us, and so we turn to him in prayer, we believe the gospel, and we act, trusting in him to be alongside us as we walk the difficult path.

    A gospel-focussed, short and instructive book that helps people to identify their own escapes and avoidances, and encourages a more fruitful path.

  • 5
    I Want to Escape Review

    Published by Leslie Hartman on 10 27 2022

    Everyone wants to escape at one point or another and I am thankful that there is a book like I Want to Escape: Reaching Out for Hope When Life Gets Too Much out there. I love how Mr. Witt lets the reader know that it is ok and a normal life experience to want to escape from life. The examples that were given to describe different levels of wanting to escape are realistic to the type of escape being described. I appreciate and am thankful that the Witt family shared their testimony of wanting to escape and how Jesus brings the Witt family through it. I love the Scripture that was used throughout the book and how the way it was written truly does give you Hope through wanting to escape. I appreciate I Want to Escape: Reaching Out for Hope When Life Gets Too Much‘s message and the comfort that is told in the book–that Jesus wants to go through life with us even if we want to escape it at times. I highly recommend I Want to Escape: Reaching Out for Hope When Life Gets Too Much, especially if you are in the mental health field or in Ministry and definitely if at some time in your life you have wanted to escape. It’s definitely worth a second read!
    I would like to thank New Growth Press for giving me a copy of I Want to Escape: Reaching Out for Hope When Life Gets Too Much to review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
    Full Review at: https://leslieslibraryescape.wordpress.com/2022/10/27/book-review-i-want-to-escape-reaching-for-hope-when-life-is-too-much/

  • 5

    Published by Annette on 09 29 2022

    My Thoughts:

    I love the start of the book: “From this point on, I want you to intentionally think on the every-present Person of Jesus. Let’s make a habit of knowing he is near.”
    I’ve heard plenty of people say, “just go to your happy place.” This is an escape. A form of escape to a place in our minds. It is a way to escape from the drudgery, boredom, stress, suffering, and fears in this life. In reality, this is not healthy, and it is not the thought and place to retreat during a time of suffering, etc. To think of Jesus. To think of His Word. To think of His promises. To think of His attributes. These are healthy Christian thoughts.

    So much of this book is splendid. And the following are reasons why I believe this:

    “Mind renewing change. Romans 12:2. But we can ask for the wind of the Spirit to come and clear our vision and renew our mind. Turning to God for grace and forgiveness is the first step toward a clear mind and a clean heart. Then, Jesus enables us to draw ever closer to him as he changes us over time.”
    For a “God-gifted change.” “Our basic plan.” Three steps are given that are concise and applicable.
    This is a bullet point, concise type book. Easy to follow. Easy to understand the subject and themes. Great application helps.
    From chapter four. “1. Trials Prove the Genuineness of Faith.” “2. Trials Make the Beauty of Faith Appear.” “3. Trials Purify and Increase Affection for Christ.”
    I love the illustration of Christ our Savior fighting with and for us.
    “Questions for Reflection” at the end of each chapter.
    Chapter five is the perfect chapter to address our distracting social media era.
    Chapter seven is a hard chapter to read because it is one of unease. It is using death as a form of escape.
    A valuable letter written by the author’s wife. This is located in a later chapter. She has written the letter to those in despair.
    One of my favorite take-aways from the book. “Rather than isolating from others, engage people with love.” This is from chapter seven.