Key Word:- CHANGE
Title:- The Dough Boys & Mary Mallon
1 Corinthians 5:6 Your glorying is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?
It has been suggested that the ‘Bonus Marchers’ of 1932 forced the endearing name of ‘Dough Boys’ into disrepute. Several years after the stock market crash that brought on the great depression, thousands upon thousands of homeless veterans camped in Washington to try and gain their promised and long delayed war bonuses paid to them. They were eventually routed and removed from the capital. Though the appearance of the name was well before the early 20th century, the term 'Dough Boys' became the nomenclature of the American soldier during the First World War. In both world wars, there is no doubt that the introduction of the American war machine into endeavours of the Allies led to a rising strength of such proportions, that victory was eventually secured. It seems the dough boys carried the necessary yeast for the growth of victorious success, or to use its ancient name, the American 'Dough Boys' carried the necessary leaven.
Dough girl, ‘Typhoid Mary’ Mallon, was a somewhat healthy carrier of the disease in New York at the beginning of the 21st Century. Though not succumbing to the disease herself, she never the less spread Typhoid wherever she was employed. Caught from her, a number of people died of Typhoid Fever. Despite her eventually knowing she was a carrier, Mary refused to remove herself from society. Finally, Mary Mallon was forcefully isolated from the wider community for over 23 years, until her death on North Brother Island. Her dough girl name of ‘Typhoid Mary’, a knowing spreader of disease and death, is now an infamous term in the English language. Remember this, for our verse today carries a principle of nature which has obvious parallels in the spiritual realm. Here it is, ‘Active ingredients of any kind have the tendency to spread!’
I would broadly describe an active ingredient in the sense of it being: any observed, acquired, felt attitude or action. For example: courage spreads, so does fear! Goodness spreads, so does evil. Excitement and anticipation are contagious, so is depression and so is malaise! See what I mean? “Active ingredients of any kind have the tendency to spread!” For life's sake then, dealing with the general principle we can say this: “Those active ingredients beneficial to the growth of the body need enhancing and those which bring death, need removing.”
The principal is clear. When the ‘Dough Boys’ of despair camp in our capitol, they need to be removed. When our ‘Typhoid Mary’s’ spread disease amongst the body, they need to be isolated. In our verse for tonight, the apostle Paul is encouraging the church in Corinth to do just that. As individuals today, we also need to examine ourselves and deal with ourselves in these areas. What infectious death do we carry with us?
My last word and final counsel today is important. Our attitude in these things needs to be one of grace. Before you let loose the terrible troops and the hard health inspectors upon yourselves or your churches, let there be grace. Where there is sin, let it be repented of. Where there is dysfunction, let it be corrected. Where there is disease, let it be cured, let it be healed. Be firm friends; be specific but let love have its way. Especially with yourself! Yes at the beginning of this day, in Christ’s all forgiving grace, be so serious with your cleansing, that you might be better in the evening, even healed, restored and clean.
Listen:-But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers. And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:7-8
Pray: - Lord, heal me of all my infectious diseases. Lord, remove from my heart those malcontents that disrupt my very being. Lord let grace flow and be the balm of Gilead to my body and to Your body the church, in Jesus name I pray, amen.