Finding Beautiful: Discovering Authentic Beauty around the World

Finding Beautiful: Discovering Authentic Beauty around the World

by Rebecca Friedlander

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Americans spend millions on beauty products, weight-loss programs, and age-defying medical interventions each year. We set impossible standards and feel bad about ourselves when we don't reach them. Is beauty truly that difficult to attain? Or could it be that our idea of what's beautiful is simply too narrow?

With engaging personal stories and dramatic before-and-after photography, filmmaker Rebecca Friedlander uncovers the true beauty of 12 women from various ethnicities and backgrounds, empowering us to shatter the lies of rejection, doubt, and low self-esteem. Utilizing compelling biblical truth and questions for personal reflection, Friedlander helps us identify our own personal battlegrounds, celebrate our uniqueness, and embrace God's definition of beautiful.

Anyone who loves a great makeover story or who wants to explore their unique identity will love this eye-opening book. Let's stop letting the world define beauty and start being a voice that tells the world what true beauty actually looks like.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781493417650
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/30/2019
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 702,701
File size: 43 MB
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About the Author

Rebecca Friedlander has been in full-time ministry for 17 years, ministering both locally and internationally using creative arts and music. As a worship leader, she has copyrighted more than 300 songs and released 13 CDs.  As a film producer and award-winning photographer, her productions include Seeds TVGirl PerfectPioneersA Southeast Alaskan Odyssey, Spiritual Warfare 101Celtic Pilgrimage, and Thin Places. Her newest production, Radical Makeovers, is a TV series about beauty, featuring makeovers and testimonies of 40 women around the world who have overcome image-related issues. The author of 8 books, Rebecca lives in San Diego, California. Visit for more information.

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Finding Beautiful: Discovering Authentic Beauty around the World 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 26 reviews.
PamelaJane More than 1 year ago
- [ ] When I learned that Rebecca Friedlander wrote a book, “Finding Beautiful” I quickly signed on to the launch team. I have followed her videos for some time now and was sure her book would be that of quality and have great photography in it. I was not disappointed, this book is beautifully put together. “Finding Beautiful” is a book for women of all ages. There are 12 stories of 12 truly beautiful women. Their stories are all different yet all have the same grace of God weaving through them. I was unable to choose just one favorite story, but I do have it narrowed down to chapters 8 and 11. Rebecca Friedlander summed it all up in the Conclusion with a quote; “Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not” by Ralph Waldo Emerson. Finding Beautiful not only challenged me to see beauty with fresh eyes in my own life, but, also challenged me to seek new ways to share beauty with others. This book has such an impact on me that I had every woman possible read just one chapter of this book. All but one have ordered at least 1 copy of “Finding Beautiful”.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Reading Finding Beautiful was a truly moving experience. This book surprised me in so many ways. Not only is this book visually stunning but it is lovely in its very heart as well. It is a collection of stories of the lives of twelve different women, all of whom had pasts filled with pain and brokenness but who found hope and redemption in the love of Christ. It is an inspiring and captivating book and I highly recommend it to any woman who has ever struggled with feeling like she is not enough. It spoke to my heart and I believe it will speak to yours as well. (I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher.)
Natalyn 7 months ago
"Finding Beautiful" by Rebecca Friedlander was such a good read! This book was interesting and inspiring, each chapter offering a new perspective. The best thing about this book was Friedlander's ability to tell a story. Each woman has a unique perspective and Friedlander articulates it so well. She looks at each woman and finds the good, the perfect, the beloved. Each story is told with clarity and with compassion. Friedlander's ability to look beyond the past and see the heart is amazing. Also, the "beautiful" theme was apparent throughout the whole book. It was repeated and repeated to really sell the lesson. Beauty is everywhere, we just have to look for it. And the bigger message: God sees our beauty even when it isn't abundantly apparent to the eyes. I loved resting in this message and letting it wash through my life. The one critique I did have for this book was the placement of the photos. I read the ebook version, so perhaps the print is different, but the photos were all saved for the end. I think if the photos were at the beginning and end of each chapter it would have added value to the text and would make the messages stick with me more closely. Some moments felt dull and pictures may have sparked more interest. Overall, this read was excellent. It taught me a message I needed to hear and I feel like all women would benefit from this book!
Meg Bucher More than 1 year ago
“If we could catch one glimpse of how amazing we are in His eyes, we would never struggle with self-confidence again.” Rebecca Friedlander, “Finding Beautiful” “Finding Beautiful” is a wonderful trek through twelve different lives, strung together by one common truth: the beauty of Christ’s love. Friedlander’s creativity is impressive and inspiring. The lesson for her reader’s is to embrace who they are in Christ, and each story highlights a specific characteristic of what makes every person beautiful. Readers will be inspired by Friedlander’s obedience and courage to use the gifts God has given her to follow Him one faithful step at a time. Each chapter of this book begins with a woman’s story. The twelve women she chose to spotlight each carry a heavy story attached to a powerful lesson of God’s love. With each account the author gives readers a sneak peak into the before and after photo shoots, part of the documentary which inspired this book. Friedlander then adds her story, followed by “God’s Story,” a section highlighting a passage(s) of Scripture. The “True Beauty Tip” at the end of each chapter challenges us to look at beauty from a greater perspective …that of our Creator. “Questions for Reflection” finish each of the twelve accounts, challenging readers to apply the stories of the women, the author, and Scripture to their own lives and current soul states. I highly recommend this book. Personally, its easy for me to get caught up in the challenges of my everyday life, which sometimes attempt to stomp out opportunities to follow God into uncharted waters and to the fulfillment of big dreams and plans He has for my life. These pages were a loving reminder to let go of my task list and expectations, and let Him work through my life. To simply be who He has made us to be, content in the beauty He’s blessed each life with, is a wonderful gift. “Even in the midst of chaos beyond our control, Christ calmly stands in the middle of the waves, unmoved by the drama.” Rebecca Friedlander, “Finding Beautiful” (I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.)
seekinggraceandgratitude More than 1 year ago
I found so much value in Rebecca Friedlander’s Finding Beautiful – Discovering Authentic Beauty Around the World. First off, Rebecca is a woman after God’s own heart and girlfriend, she is quite the creative personality and purposeful storyteller! This book was my first encounter with her ministry and I was instantly impressed with her love of God and her love of all things that are God’s creation. Based on her television series called Radical Makeovers, Rebecca focuses on 12 of the 30 women she interviewed from around the world. Each of the 12 women have their own unique story while sharing a common battle against image-related issues. Each chapter concentrates on one woman’s journey by describing where they came from and then leading into where they are now in their journey of following Christ. Using her artistic flair, Rebecca includes dramatic before-and-after photography to further drive home the redeeming power found when one chooses to accept Jesus as their Savior and live their life for Him. Following each of the women’s testimonies, Rebecca shares her own personal reflections on whatever theme is tied to the specific woman’s journey and concludes each chapter with biblical truth and thought-provoking questions to stir the reader’s heart. Friends, this book is absolutely beautiful in every way imaginable! From the physical look of the book (hardcover on the outside, thick glossy pages with high-res photography in the inside) to the words written on each page, you will be encouraged to dig deeper into your soul as you seek God’s wisdom to reveal more about who He created you to be. Throughout this book I felt very connected to each story (again, Rebecca is a phenomenal storyteller!) while also being able to relate to each woman as well as Rebecca’s perspective. God’s story told through the Bible and displayed at the end of each chapter was the perfect bow tying everything together. Beauty is certainly in the eye of the beholder and the beholder is the Creator of the universe. Finding Beautiful is a captivating book full of encouragement for the reader to identify their own personal struggles and insecurities while celebrating their God-given uniqueness and beautiful soul. If you are like me and enjoy being inspired by hearing powerful real-life testimonies of faith, then you will certainly have a wonderful time reading Finding Beautiful. * I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thank you for writing this book! I love learning the stories of others and finding God's hand at work!
summer_no9 More than 1 year ago
This book was amazing writing and compelling to read with that also had an offer mostly for all the women that discovery and searching for beautiful to help you find the truth beauty it had inside of you and all of us from the beginning that god had creating us and carry us to see love, valued from ourselves and the others. I highly recommend to everyone must to read this book. “ I received complimentary copy of this book from Baker Books Bloggers for this review”.
medwards429 More than 1 year ago
Finding Beauty ... Thank you to Just Read Tours for selecting me to be part of the tour; and to the publisher Baker Books for sending this inspirational book. This is a Christian Living/Women’s self-help book by worship-leader, film-producer, and award-winning photographer Rebecca Friedlander. This book explores the search for “true beauty” and highlights the best of the stories from “Radical Makeovers”. Friedlander got the idea after hearing a model’s story about feeling like a piece of meat and Friedlander’s comparison of how butcher shops discarded unwanted carcasses vs. the “meat-market” of today’s society. The book tells about the various women and their beauty, along with their spiritual intervention with God. The “themed” chapters are told about the subject – their history, explaining the photo shoot, the author’s story relating to the theme, God’s (bible) story relating to the particular chapter, a “true beauty tip”, along with questions for reflection. Traveling the world; from Paris, Hawaii, England, California, Israel, Ireland, places across the US and Mexico; Friedlander teaches us to not define beauty from outward appearances. She instead has us rely upon uses God’s definition to discover what true beauty is and where our transformation can begin. Admittedly this book was outside my genre and I really don’t do the “self-help” type of books. But, something about this book seemed to reach out to me. If you enjoy an inspirational read with Christian inspiration as well as biblical quotes, you will definitely enjoy this read. I honestly couldn’t put it down once I got it! I had to force myself to stop so I could soak it all in and really receive the messages in it. I definitely felt myself changed by it and do feel better about myself after reading it. I’ll definitely be re-reading it again – especially for the reflection questions.
Librarycataloger More than 1 year ago
This is a book that will speak to so many women because most of us are very conscious of our appearance and sadly, our society is obsessed with physical beauty. In the introduction of Finding Beauty the author expresses her hopes that this book will 'tell the age-old truth in a fresh way: you are loved, you are valued, and you were created to carry true beauty that will never grow old.' (p. 13) In the next twelve chapters she uses photographs and word pictures to indeed show that true beauty does not grow old. Each chapter has a different woman as the subject but all the chapters have My Story, God's Story (selected scripture), a True Beauty Tip and Questions for Reflection. These women are from all over the world and as different as they all are, they are still very similar. After years of seeking, struggling and feeling unworthy, they have discovered the true source of beauty. They have allowed God to be their stylist; they have chosen God's makeover and they have found their own beautiful! Rebecca Friedlander's talent as a photographer is very evident in the featured photos and her personal relationship with God is very obvious in her narrative. Finding Beautiful is inspiring and eye-opening and it is perfect for reading alone or reading in a group setting. I can see it being used for a women's Bible study and it would be a valuable tool in a teen youth group. Friedlander chooses to end her book with this prayerful thought: 'May you not only find beautiful but also let it overflow to others as you share it with a world that longs for authentic beauty'. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher and I have chosen to write this honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
i received an advanced copy from Baker Publishing. I love the beautiful, clean, crisp and thought provoking images displayed in this book. The author aims to uncover beauty through different people's stories, adventures and life lessons. I walked away feeling inspired and I highly recommend this book!
CaptainChaosMom More than 1 year ago
This is a truly beautiful book in many ways, but I'll try to be brief. First, the photographic makeover concept the author uses for representing how each of the ladies featured saw themselves before and after Christ is gorgeous and artistic; a beautiful and concrete way to illustrate a usually subjective concept. Second, the author's writing style is easy to read and eloquent as it tells the story of each woman's transformation, of how each found the beauty within themselves because of their Creator's love for them. Third, I loved how the author also included in each chapter a short story on the interviewing/photographing process from her perspective, an accompanying story from the Bible, a "True Beauty Tip," and questions for reflection. The variety of locations and different stories made this a quick read, but one I want to revisit and savor at a slower pace. I'd also recommend this book for girls down to age 11/12 depending on maturity level. The testimonies of these ladies and the topic of beauty....what this book does to strengthen your faith or change how God sees you....I can't put it into words that do it justice. "Loved it" just doesn't seem to be enough.
JanReads2 More than 1 year ago
In 1 word I would call this book – Beautiful! It is beautiful to look at, with a gorgeous picture on the cover, and thick shiny paper inside to show off the color pictures in it. In the book, there are 12 women who each share their story from broken to beautiful. The author takes beautiful color photographs depicting the before situation of each woman, and their life after transformation! Their lives were spiraling downward, but change happened and each woman rebounded to a new life! Each woman’s story is very different, yet each story is truly an inspiration.
Sprinkle23 More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed Finding Beautiful by Rebecca Friedlander. Although I was not familiar with Radical Makeovers, the television show related to this book, I was intrigued and inspired by the stories of the women in this book. In the introduction it says that the book “shares far more details than included in the show.” So, for those who have seen the show, this book should still be interesting. At times, the women's stories moved me to tears. I liked how the Rebecca Friedlander shared each woman's personal story, information about the photo shoot, her (Rebecca's) own story, a story/topic from the Bible, and questions for reflection. The narrative was creative and well-written. The full color photos complemented the featured stories and accented the theme of each chapter. I recommend Finding Beautiful by Rebecca Friedlander to any woman. The diversity of topics, engaging narrative, and inspiring stories will appeal to many women. With it's hard cover, glossy pages, and full-color photos, it would also make a great gift. Disclosure of Material Connection: I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Empowering Read!! I received an advanced copy from the publisher. Finding Beautiful is 12 stories of women that find their true beauty through the Love of Jesus Christ. After reading the book, I contemplated how important it is for all of us to share our stories. Because, you never know who you may lead to realize that walking with God in your life is way better than walking this world alone. Thanks, Baker Publishing Group for the advanced copy and Rebecca Friedlander for sharing your talent of writing and photography.
Karathoner More than 1 year ago
This book made me feel searching and exploring into each woman’s life. It is a well woven book of what beautiful can look like in so many ways. I enjoyed the chance to sit down one chapter at a time and see what beauty can look like even through hurts and struggles. From the cover the reader may think this is a story of the beautiful of creation, like oceans, forests, etc, but it is not. Yet it is a story of the beauty of God’s creation in 12 different women. The author has captured their struggles, their joys and the directions God would have them take. Thought producing photos by the author as the stories are told, reflecting each individual women. Each chapter also contains famous quotes tying into each story. This book could also be used as a Bible study as each chapter contains a relationship to a Biblical character or event and then ends with reflective questions. While the author traveled to find each women to fit each chapter I would have liked to see more diversity in the women that the author chose. I received an advance full version of the book from the publisher. This is my own honest review.
LisaPClement More than 1 year ago
The book itself is a beautiful book but when you open it and begin reading the stories inside you then see the real beauty. I truly enjoyed reading this book and the transformations of each women. Each chapter is a journey about another women. God is good. I received an advanced copy. This is my own opinion
SheilaHH More than 1 year ago
I recently enjoyed reading to review the book Finding Beautiful, Discovering Authentic Beauty Around The World. It is written by film producer, speaker, worship leader, photographer, and author Rebecca Friedlander. Baker Book Publishing Group sent me an advanced full version hard copy in order to read and write my honest review. I found this book to be a timely, yet timeless collection of the redemptive life stories of 12 young women from across the globe. The sometimes gritty details of these individual journeys will resonate with women of all ages, and with many men as well. Intertwined with the 12 stand-alone life experiences are portions of Rebecca’s own story, travels, and experiences in writing this book. Beautiful photographs of these brave women thoughtfully illustrate the before and after aspects of each of their paths to discovering what is authentic beauty. Included in each chapter are quotes from famous people on the vast and misunderstood subject of beauty, true beauty tips (not what you think!), relatable stories from Scripture, and reflective questions for the reader to ponder. All of these round out each of the 12 chapters to extend the applications of this book from individual reading into group studies. In reading this thoughtful book, I gained the following personal takeaways and gentle reminders. Women and men can easily personalize and internalize subtle negative messages about themselves. The ever-changing “standards” of worldly beauty are impossible to attain. Redirect my heart toward a beauty that is lasting. Discover anew the limitless expanse of true and authentic beauty that can only be found in and through our Creator’s definition. Rebecca encourages each one of us in our individual journeys on this earth to finding the type of true beauty that is eternal and worth pursuing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was privileged to be on the launch team for this book. I have been following Rebecca online for a few years and I loved what she was doing with the TV show, and when I saw she had written a book about it I had to get my hands on it. The book is just as powerful as the videos she has shot to tell the stories of women from around the world. The book is full of amazing transformational stories and gives you the ability to look into peoples lives in a way you would never have known without Rebecca and her willingness to do what the Lord has called her too. If you ever feel like you're alone in your struggles this book is for you. It will open your eyes to see that you are not alone in the struggles and trauma that life brings, and that there is a way out and healing waiting to happen. I wish there was a book like this for men because I think men often get overlooked when it comes to things like this book goes into. But if you're a man, don't let the fact that it's a book about women make you put it down. The lessons and stories can also speak to you and apply to you. Because God loves you just as much as the women in this book, and He wants to have a relationship with you too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Telling your own story in a compelling and fully transparent way is a difficult task. But telling someone else’s story in a compelling, fully transparent and truth-honoring way can be an utterly terrifying endeavor. In her new book _Finding Beautiful_ Rebecca Friedlander has accomplished both and, in the process, encouraged a whole new outlook on what true beauty really means. Amidst gorgeous photos set in a “before and after” makeover-style framework, Rebecca tells the story of brave women from around the globe who have, through faith and the power of God, found redemption and healing and have learned to call themselves “beautiful” in the light of the Truth. Through each chapter, Rebecca interlaces each woman’s story with a related event from her own life and then ties it all together through Scriptural accounts, even offering thought-provoking focus questions for the reader at the end of each chapter. For the woman longing to find a bit of community in her own struggles with identity, acceptance and learning to love the woman God has made her, this book was written with you in mind. You may very well find echoes of your own life within the stories of the women in this book, and hopefully will find encouragement to continue to press into truth and overcome the worldly parameters of what is considered “beautiful”.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
#Findingbeautiful This book is a must for every woman searching for their true unique beauty. And every man seeking it in a life mate. Pressed out of it's pages comes the fragrance of the One true lover of our souls, whose touch upon our lives releases the essence of who He created us to be to a dying world. Rebecca expresses the unspoken beauty of Christ living deep within us through the stories she tells in words and pictures of the beautiful brave women who have allowed us to glimpse their journeys. Thank you.
Joyschneck More than 1 year ago
This book told the stories of 12 modern day Christian women who had miracles and love from God restore their lives and redeem their stories. We need to be telling and hearing more stories of God actively moving and working in our world and Rebecca does a beautiful job of this through her storytelling and illustrations. I am thankful to have received an advanced copy from the publisher but my reviews and thoughts are all my own.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I received a advance copy of this book as part of the launch team. Absolutely loved how the Author tells the story of 12 women who lives were filled with pain, brokenness and struggles. But they found “true beauty” and redemption in finding Jesus Christ. This book is filled with hope, inspiration, encouragement, reflecting questions, and scriptures. If you have ever struggled with not being “good enough”, Please read this book! Perfect book for gifting, women’s bible study and All ages.
halthegal More than 1 year ago
i received this book as part of the launch team, and here's my review! i was enjoying a few chapters of rebecca's "findng beautiful" last nite and tried to skip ahead to see how she was gonna wrap it up with a thoughtful conclusion, but my copy cuts off on pg 192 in the middle of a sentence about deanna! so i'm about 30 pages short of knowing the author's full intent. but here's what i can tell you about this book: each chapter tells the story of a woman and has a photo of her in some setting that reflects her past while she holds a cardboard scrap where she's written a word that used to define her. then rebecca gives her a "makeover" and she might hold something else with a new word on it, having shed the old definition people placed on her, and having embraced God's call and Jesus' love to live a full, accepted life. it's a good plan. and i'm glad rebecca has found her call to tell the stories of these women. but as an artist, i kinda feel like a snob telling you this: these women are already beautiful and don't need curling-iron, prom dress and pearl makeovers. (also i'm not sure why the cardboard scraps?) and if it's "finding beautiful" and we're "redifining beauty for our world," isn't the point that it comes from within, and our identity in Christ, and not from sephora and a new outfit? they're good/decent stories and some of the photos are beaufiful, even if just a bit stiff/posed and not all candid and lovely. so it's your basic trying to be a feel-good inspirational Christian read. but it's nothing too deep. (the line i've been most encouraged by so far is "often the world defines beauty as self-confidence, but God calls us to follow Him and become Christ confident because His plan for our lives is bigger than what we can accomplish on our own." so there's that.) also, if rebecca's tv show/travel/career takes her around the world, the women in the photos sure are pale. there is one latina in there somewhere, but i see no other women of color....?!? this bothers me. i'd say it'd make a nice gift book, or borrow it from the library, but it kinda felt a little dorky & tunnel vision at times to me. (i'm a dork, too, but just sayin.) :/
inkblotlife-Peggy91 More than 1 year ago
This is truly a beautiful book on true beauty. I love biographies, memoirs, and God stories of redemption. This book included all the above. Plus there are pictures, a plus in my world. It is a simple story about profound life changes of women from the western world. The around the world pertains to the western world of Europe and the Americas. I would have liked to have seen women from Asia and Africa included. It got me thinking of their issues with identity. Would they be the same or different? Maybe Rebecca will do a second book with more of the world. It is an easy read but with some encouraging reminders and challenging thoughts on our identity. I love seeing how God changed hearts and minds and you can see it in their life and on their faces. This book is very enjoyable and accessible. It would be good even for older teens and young adults. I felt like for everyone of these women in the book, I knew of a young lady who was in the before story of these ladies. I think it would be helpful to see the way God helped them overcome. Rebecca's personal story, and Bible stories woven in was a very creative way to connect the book. I would recommend this book to anyone. I am looking forward to the video that goes with it. -I received an advanced copy from the publisher. (I also went on and pre-ordered so I can pass some copies along. I think it is worth it.)
irishniff More than 1 year ago
The idea of identity is such a big thing in our world today and Finding Beautiful addresses that issue through the powerful stories of these beautiful women. Along the way, Rebecca Friedlander includes bits of her own personal experiences. She states that she takes artistic license with Bible passages to include a section of Biblical fiction relating to each chapter. Throughout the book, the author asks thought provoking questions. I definitely think that this book would make for a great small group because the content easily lends to discussion. The group could read one chapter a week and have plenty to discuss. My advice is to read this book slowly as these stories of transformed lives are rich in lessons that will touch your heart. I was given a complimentary copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions are my own.