For someone who uses smartphones, computers and works with a treadmill desk you certainly seem to treat them as though they are evil. You have a nice house and a great retirement plan where’s the abandonment in that ?
Perhaps the problem is in leadership and not the smartphone. The race doesn’t have much leadership from AIM and those who are live under a different set of rules because they’ve already been on the race. How much modeling is done of this abandonment? I remember my leaders on the race would take days off to goto the Internet and do work or Skype aim leaders and talk with their families. If leaders don’t model it’s no wonder you have problems.
Maybe you’re asking people to live a way different than you are. It’s clearly not sustainable since you don’t live it nor do your leaders. So perhaps the change you need is to stop asking people to abandon things and teach them, through modeling, Good stewardship.
It also seems like want you have a conflict of interests. You push blogging as massive way of advertising you trips and organization. Then want ban smartphones. This seems Hypocritical. Either you want to abandon the connection or share the daily stories. But you can’t really have both.
The other question I would ask is how important is abandonment? You seem to think based on Jesus sending out his disciples that it’s the only way to do things. I would remind you Paul the greatest missionary of them never went on these little journeys. Infact tons of great Christians in my life have never done an abandonment journey. CS Lewis thought going to park the was an adventure. Francis chan lives in the ultra connected world and seems to have turned out alright.
As a former racer I would say there are many things I don’t agree with on this whole series. And in the culture at adventures in missions. It has a dangerous focus on acts, doing as your told by God and growth. None of which Jesus actually preached on.
You exert a high level of influence on young impressionable people and yet most leave with little interest in your ways or teachings. Perhaps its time to listen to the hard feedback that’s been discard for years at adventures in missions.
I know this, I never have recommended the race. Don’t get me wrong I learned things but I wouldn’t call it a good experience.