At the time of Elijah, men served the lustful god, Baal, through sex with temple prostitutes! Their wives must have had to ignore and minimize any pain they felt about this, since it was considered their husbands' “holy” and religious duty. Men also served the idol of their own prosperity. During lean times they sacrificed their first-born children to Baal to ensure that the rains would return. 

Everything about Baal worship was designed to numb emotions, harden hearts, dull consciences, and destroy family life. For the nine months these little ones were in the womb, Mom dared not form any bond with them, lest the pain be even more unbearable. By the time younger brothers and sisters came along, her heart must have grown too numb to bond with them as well. And Dad was too engrossed in his religiously sanctioned sex addiction to care. 

Sounds a lot like our modern culture doesn't it? So many men are  addicted to pornography. All manner of sexual perversion is not only permissible, but celebrated and even advocated in film and literature. And to preserve prosperity and personal well-being, so many sacrifice their children through abortion or neglect. We may no longer worship Baal as a god, but St. Paul said that the gods to whom the pagans sacrifice are actually demons (1 Corinthians 10:20). The demon, Baal, is still with us. He has merely found new ways for humans to serve him. 

To point up the folly of serving him, Elijah prophetically smote the land with a curse of drought and famine, which Baal could do nothing to stop (1 Kings 17:1). After 3 ½ years with no rain, he challenged the prophets of Baal to a contest. Both they and Elijah built altars on Mt. Carmel (Baal's high place), and prayed that their god would burn up the sacrifice. Fire fell from heaven and burned not only Elijah's sacrifice, but also the stones, the soil around the altar, and even the many buckets of water poured over it all (1 Kings 18:34)! Fearfully, the people turned their hearts back to God, and they killed the false prophets who had helped them destroy their own family life. Only then could Elijah pray that the rains would return and end the curse.

Today, Baal is still served, and a curse is upon us. Elijah Rain Ministries was founded to help train the body of Christ to help cure the soul's illness that turns hearts of fathers and mothers away from God, away from each other, and away from their children. We do this in the spirit of Malachi 4:5-6: ”Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the Prophet before the great and terrible day of the Lord. And he will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse” (NAS). And only by reconciling the generations will the second of Elijah's tasks also be fulfilled:  “Elijah is coming and will restore all things” (Matthew 17:1, NAS ). 

Our mission is to call hearts to repentance, healing, and reconciliation.  We pray that we may contribute as much as possible toward turning hearts of fathers and mothers to their children, and toward restoring all things. And in the end may we all be able to proclaim, as did Elijah, “LET IT RAIN!” 


As pastors in the 1960's, John and Paula Sandford asked God why church members kept falling into the same sin patterns over and over. God's answer was a type of pastoral counseling called "inner healing," through the power of the cross and resurrection.

So in 1974 they left the pastorate in Wallace, Idaho and founded Elijah House in nearby Coeur d' Alene. Inner healing proved so effective that before they even installed a phone they were booked with prayer counseling for weeks in advance! People came to trust them so well that the local Catholic bishop asked John — a Protestant pastor — to take charge of the spiritual formation of his Charismatic nuns!

At first, John and Paula wanted their ministry to be a school for persons with a prophetic calling. But they soon learned that much healing is needed to prepare hearts for that task. So they developed the inner healing side of the ministry long before bringing the prophetic to the fore. Meanwhile, John wrote books on the prophetic and became spiritual father to many

prophetic leaders.

John and Paula authored many titles, including the classics, The Elijah Task, Transformation of the Inner Man, and Healing the Wounded Spirit (the latter two, on inner healing, are now a four-book series). God made sure the books got into the right hands—we've heard testimonies from persons who were browsing in bookstores when one of them literally fell off the shelf and hit them in the head! 

Over the years, John and Paula and their team trained thousands to carry their work onward. As a result, inner healing ministries have been spawned in many nations.


    After Elijah's departure, Elisha carried Elijah's mantle and continued the work he began. And he expanded it! Mark's parents passed their mantles to him and Maureen before going to be with Jesus. So, as an Elisha to their Elijah, here's how Elijah Rain will be expanding the work John and Paula began: 


    John and Paula laid down a solid foundation which, over the years, Mark and others refined and expanded. The plan was always to bring inner healing into the churches so God's people could learn to minister the Holy Spirit's healing to each other. 

    To further that end, we will expand our teaching on how to follow the Holy Spirit in inner healing, and offer more mentoring on how to master the practical how-to's through hands-on practicums.

    In this day of increasing lawlessness, we'll put greater  emphasize on how the natural law of sowing and reaping affects our lives and relationships. We can no longer assume that this is firmly a part of every Christian's worldview.

    As sin and occult activity increase, demonization is very much on the rise. There will be more on deliverance from demons.

    We will concentrate more on the resurrection side of healing. Sin is what we do, not who we are. Therefore, putting to death sin patterns should lead to discovery of our true identity in Christ ——walking in God's original design for each of us. And it should lead us to affirm others' identity. We need to learn to walk

    in a resurrection lifestyle.

    Transformation should naturally lead to reconciliation. There will be more on marriage, and on turning the hearts of fathers and mothers to their children. 

    Inner healing removes sinful compulsions, but there are still habits, and some habits die hard. We'll share more about how

    to walk out your healing in practical cross-centered ways.

    . . . And there will be more, as the Holy Spirit reveals.


    John the Baptist came in the spirit and power of Elijah, and his primary task was to issue a call to repentance. Since we accomplish that task one-on-one through prayer counseling,

    it makes sense that when we offer “counsel” to the Body of Christ, it will come from a pastoral counselor's perspective. 

    Having counseled persons from all over the world, we have

    a unique vantage point on what God is doing in people's hearts collectively. We'll share those perspectives as the Holy Spirit leads!