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Firm and Secure

Because our practice is rooted in the Greek word of "Asphalizo," which corresponds to the Strong's Concordance  number of "805" (Hence, "805 Counseling Services" - get it?), I thought it appropriate to offer a little bible study on the word in case anyone is wondering.  I had a supervisor once who, although a delightful man, ridiculed me for my choice of business name.  He had a natural propensity toward dry cynicism and often provided me with unsolicited critique on a number of matters, but somehow our personalities were a fantastic fit and I thoroughly enjoyed working for him even when he picked all of my decisions apart.  "What does the 805 even mean?" he asked me one day with only minimal genuine interest and predetermined intent to criticize whatever response I gave. "It's the Greek word for 'asphalizo' which means to 'make firm and secure', and it's what I hope to help every person I work with find.  I want to help them become firm and secure in their life purpose, relationships, and future!" I replied enthusiastically.  After a brief eye roll and shake of his head, he informed me how annoying it was to him on a personal level when therapists or counselors or any business owners named their organizations after something so strange and cryptic.  Undeterred and un-offended, I responded with a smile and reciprocal shake of my head at his lack of shared zeal for my cause.  "I wanted the name to mean something deeper," is what I replied.  I think the conversation concluded with a few more eye rolls, him telling me how silly and idealistic I was, and us sharing a good laugh at our vast differences.  

The truth is, I did want the name of my company to mean something deeper than just "Dr. Heather Flores Counseling," or any other business banner to advertise who I am, what I do, and how I operate.  I wanted something that somehow pointed not to me, but back to God, and one day in 2020, the number "805" just came to me. I knew nothing of it's Greek numerical assignment in the Bible, and  I'd never even heard of the word "asphalizo" before.  I barely speak Spanish, much less Greek, so my research into its origins began and 805 Counseling Services was formed.  So, here's the historical undercurrent of it all.

If you don't know how to study the Bible in the original languages of Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, then let me briefly tell you that  it's a daunting, but fascinating experience.  The word, "asphalizo," that corresponds to it's numerical counterpart, "805," occurs  only four times throughout the Bible. Specifically, Matthew 27:64, Matthew 27:65, Matthew 27:66, and Acts 16:24.  The interesting and similar nature of all of these verses is that each one puts on wretched display, man's human effort to make things "firm and secure." In the Matthew verses, the death  of Jesus has occurred, but not the Resurrection, and in striving to stop rumors of such, the chief priests and Pharisees petition Pilate to "secure" the tomb so that no one can get in or out.  The fear among the religious leaders of the day is that followers of Jesus would go into the tomb, move his body, and claim a false resurrection.  2,000 plus years later, we already know what happened, but in that moment, they did not.  They simply knew that they had to stop any movement in or out of the tomb, so they secured it as best the could and positioned a guard outside.  Similarly, in Acts 16:24, man once again tries to make something firm and secure.  Paul and Silas were imprisoned at the time and a guard fastened their feet in stocks so that they couldn't escape. Firm and secure by man's standards for sure.  

In each of the aforementioned passages above, however, the only thing "firm and secure" in the outcome of the situations is the power of Jesus to break chains and remove stones. In Matthew 28, Jesus rose, despite man's best effort to  keep Him firmly and securely behind a stone, and in Acts 16:26, the same Jesus poured out His glory to remove the prison chains from Paul and Silas. Unstoppable, impenetrable, and invincible, He is the One to Whom we defer all of our work and plans, and in Him, we stand firm and stay secure.  

It's not an easy path, and I would caution you to trust anyone who says it is.  Becoming firm and securely rooted in life, love, truth, and healing takes work, commitment, and a sprinkle of faith to believe.  

"With man, it's impossible, but with God, all things are possible!"

                                   --Matthew 19:26

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