Most of the short-term trips I've been on have had different prep styles. Two of them were trips where you met your team when you landed and had a few days of prep. Others were with my own youth group and we prepared together.
TJ, head honcho adult leader person/youth pastor, had very clear objectives for our first meeting together that were memorable.
1. No flashbanging - we are not going to create a last of noise and excitement that will have no lasting effect.
2. We must bathe (in His grace) - Yes, physical bathing is going to be important, but being prepared spiritually is vital. The need to be in the Word, in prayer, and in genuine fellowship with other believers will be critical. How can we serve and love others and love God without being filled with His presence?
3. Die first and then we go - to some this may seem backwards, but it's not ultimately about us. If I know that I in myself have nothing to offer, it has to be all Jesus coming out. This is so connect to the previous objective of being filled.
So, today as I will sit in an airport for 9 hours for my connecting flight to Panama, I'm looking forward to extra time to bathe.