Right after high school, I sold a cosmetic product to help pay for college. I lived with my mother and didn't own a car, so I rode a bike across town to sell cosmetics to the women in my territory. I rode down the street, but any dog that was not tied to a chain would chase me down the street nipping at my heels. I was told that dogs can sense fear in people.
When my daughter was born, I used to put her in the stroller to take walks in the neighborhood. We enjoyed these walks until dogs would come out from behind the bushes and chase at my heels as I quickly wheeled my daughter to safety. I remembered when I had sold cosmetics and wondered if the dogs were really sensing my fear, as I had been told.
I watched other people walking in the neighborhood and dogs didn't seem to follow at their heels as they walked. It must be that these dogs really sensed my fear and followed me because of it. Not wanting to deprive my daughter of walks in the fresh air, I decided to act like I wasn't afraid when I walked in the neighborhood. I held my body upright, looked the dogs in the eyes, and said, "NO" with a forceful voice. To my surprise, the dogs didn't bother me.
When I was heavy, people didn't always welcome me into conversations with them. I figured that they didn't want to include me because of my weight. I only had a few long-term friendships from high school. I was afraid of developing new friendships for fear of rejection, which was sabotaging my friendships with others.
Jesus got me through that, when I turned my concerns over to His very capable hands. People were sensing my fear just like the dogs had. When I approached people with an upright body, looked them in the eye, and had a smile, they were much more apt to include me in their conversations. They were much more open and welcoming. It had been my fear of rejection that they sensed, but fortunately, Jesus refocused me. And Jesus came and touched them, and said, Arise and be not afraid. Matthew 17:7
Since I have used this Bible passage as an example of how God has positively influenced my overeating, this does not necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the verse.