There’s a parable that goes like this… a church man was visited by a needy person and the needy person said: I am hungry; I haven’t eaten for three days. I need clothes; my clothes have become rags and are falling apart. I need a ride to town; I have no vehicle. Then the church man said: be you fed, and be you clothed; and may someone come along and give you a ride to town. Amen! Bye!
Sometimes in God’s sight symbols of action don’t count as real action. By the same token sometimes it’s not practical for a helper to be every place in the world that has needs and the symbolic method is the only reasonable and best action that can be done. The case must rest on what is possible and reasonable and only God can judge.
Another important factor is the commitment that has been made such as commitments made to other persons, and commitments made to God. When a person glues a promise to their soul and then doesn’t keep their promise, it tears the fabric of their solar plexes.
Sometimes symbols don’t count to a husband or a wife when lonesomeness crowds the heart and all the reasons in the world can’t excuse those vast, empty feelings.
Sometimes symbols don’t count even though written on a technical score point. Sometimes when love lies bleeding no symbolic tourniquet can stop its bleeding.
Sometimes symbols don’t count when the X is unknown and there are no clues to figure it.
If Jesus made a cross symbol and took off to hide in India, where would we be salvation wise?
But symbols aren’t just junk either. The trumpet of Gabriel, the staff of life, the bread of life, the rod of Moses, the Cross of Jesus, and on and on. Everything has its time and place for use. Symbols help to understand revelation, mysteries, parables and etc.
Symbols can be weak, like a weak hand shake or a fake smile. Symbols can be strong like hearts and flowers.