A trip like this is not just something you go into without some significant preparation. This page has lists of advice, recommendations and requirements for you to be a successful member of the team.
Africa is very different to Australia spiritually. Australia's spiritual climate is a "cold war". Africa is open spiritual warfare.
In Australia, we live in an environment where if state you believe in spiritual things, the system calls you a fool.
Try to say you DON'T believe in spiritual things in Africa, and you will be called a fool!
Thus, the spiritual hostility in Africa is entirely different. Demonized people will openly engage you. If you are not prepared for aggressive spiritual conflict, you will get caught unawares, and the damage to your spiritual health can be significant.
So don't think you can just coast into a trip like this. You need to be actively and aggressively upping your spiritual walk. Prayer AND fasting (non-optional!), expanding your knowledge of the scripture and if you have not dealt with any secret sin, do so NOW. You know the scripture about what is done in secret will be shouted from the rooftops? Demons love to do that. It's not that they can read your mind - but they CAN read you like a book. They can smell sin on you and are good at guessing what that sin is. So if you're not clean - get clean!
We will be making time to meet as a time to pray and prepare - but you need to do the heavy lifting yourself.
It is likely that at some point you will be called upon to speak publicly. You need to prepare for this.
As part of my team, you represent me and, on these trips, I carry high expectations. So, you need to be prepared.
You need to have ready two punchy, 5-minute power nuggets.
Your personal testimony.
A mini message.
You are not going to get the time to waffle on or to take an emotional run up. If you get the opportunity to speak, you need to be ready to hit it at top-gear. If this intimidates you - good! Because if you are NOT properly prepared, you will lose your opportunity. I will be testing you on these messages and testimonies as we get closer to the trip.
At services and crusades, you WILL be called upon to pray for people. If you have not done this sort of thing before, we will get you skilled up in advance.
We will also be doing some street outreach and ministry. If you have not done that sort of thing before, you will always be with those who have.
Some of you will also be called on to do more significant ministry. But this will not be "your stuff" but, my stuff. The good news is that I will have done all the preparatory heavy lifting. You will just need to present it.
And this of course will only be for the more mature and skilled team members. For those of you that don't fit that category - don't worry, there will still be plenty for you to do, even during teaching sessions.
The reality of these sort of trips is that there is not a lot of "down time". This is NOT a holiday, nor is it a tour. And unless you are bleeding from the eyeballs, you don't get to just "opt out". But if you are coming to be spiritually developed and challenged, you are going to love this.
For those of you who know me, you know I am a loving and caring leader. You also know that I am somewhat directive. On these trips the "somewhat" disappears! And I make no apology for it. To be on one of these trips with me IS a privilege and I expect you to treat it as such.
Thus, I will be expecting the following:
a bold, positive, "can-do" attitude to whatever we face. The reality on trips like this is such that if you are given an opportunity and you don't grab it by the throat, you will likely not be given another.
a self-awareness to your environment. People are watching everything you do and say. You are an ambassador for Christ.
a willingness to serve. In a practical sense, that will look like serving Peter, Israel and myself. When we are moving at the pace that we will on this trip, sometimes we just need practical help. Being alert and anticipating the practical needs of those ministering is very important.
punctuality. Be warned. I don't wait for team members. lf you know we will be leaving around a certain time, be ready BEFORE then. Plans can change and you need to be prepared for it.
preparedness. On these trips, spontaneous things can sometimes happen. Be prepared to launch out at a moment's notice. There are always the ones that are prepared and get to experience the exciting spontaneous stuff - and there are always those who are caught napping.
What to Bring
Travel light. We are moving around alot. You don't want to be dragging a heavy case for 2 or 3 weeks.
South Africa: Climate is essentially the same as Victoria. Nigeria: Lagos is hot. Overnight lows of 25 up to 35 during the day. Both Nigeria and South Africa are modern nations when it comes to clothing standards.
For public ministry, in most cases smart dressy attire will suffice. But men, have a shirt or two and tie ready in case. Ladies ensure that your clothing is modest and appropriate for someone on stage.
For streetwear, whatever you are comfortable with will be fine. However, again for the ladies, be aware of who you are representing. Christian modesty - even in the heat.
Try to limit clothing to 4-5 days worth. There will be laundering opportunities along the way.
Hardcopy Bible. Even if you prefer digital. I want you to be SEEN with a Bible.
Journal. This is a unique experience. Take the time to write it down. Each day just cryptically bullet point your day, it will help you remember the important stuff when you want to write it out later.
Earplugs/Eye mask. You will invariably end up sharing quarters. This will help you sleep if your buddy is a snorer! They will also help on the plane to get a bit of shut eye.
South Africa: Types D, M & N
Nigeria: Types D & G
I suggest you have a power board for your charging and an adapter.
Voltage conversion is not required for these countries.
Everything about this trip is self-funded. There will not be any offerings or such to offset the trip. We are going into the poorest of communities in South Africa. So, I encourage you to come ready to bless.
With this in mind, I encourage you to BOLDLY fundraise. Yes, you are going to have a wonderful experience. But its not a holiday. You are going to preach the gospel and build up the body of Christ - a more than worthy cause to ask people to give to.
But for those from The Way, while I am sure there will be those that DO want to give to you, be sensitive that people in The Way have other brothers and sisters going on this trip, or another trip, or a planning to step out themselves! So, if you ARE looking to fundraise, look to bring in money from beyond that of The Way which is already giving so much.
As we bolt down the details of this trip, we will be able to tighten the grip on what expenses will be, and that will also be posted here.
Make sure you have appropriate travel insurance - but also ensure you don't get stung by doubling up. Sometimes travel insurance can be bundled in with tickets or the like. Be sure you know what coverage you have.
Yellow Fever vaccination is required for re-entry into Australia after visiting Nigeria.
When visiting nations with a "clear and present danger" of disease, some vaccinations are worth having. For full information see:
While South Africa is a modern nation and pharmacies are available, due to the pace of the trip. Some basic medicines for head and stomach are a good idea. I once heard a missionary say, "sometimes you just need to take the aspirin!"
Ibroprofen - good all-round pain reliever
something for diarrhea
something for constipation (one never really knows which way it might go!)
something to stop vomiting
an electrolyte replacement if you have been vomiting