Author: Sarah Zacharias Davis
ISBN: 978-1-4000-7439-6
Publisher: WaterBrook Press

Click Here To Purchase The Friends We Keep: A Woman's Quest for the Soul of Friendship

Exploring Friendship Among Women

Friendship among women is explored from different perspectives in The Friends We Keep: A Woman's Quest for the Soul of Friendship  by Sarah Zacharias Davis. Viewing how women relate to one another through the roles we play, through the stages of life, and in light of the various circumstances in which we find ourselves sheds light on how friendships influence our own growth and development.

The easy reading style and organization of this book make it convenient for the reader to read the chapters chronologically or to skip around according to a specific interest. The author thoughtfully considers different faces of friendship in each chapter and stimulates thought in the reader to ponder her own answers to the many questions she raises. For example, in the chapter on the roles we play, Davis raises the thorny issue of how difficult many find it to be happy for a friend who has experienced a blessing of one kind or another. She points out “jealousy survives only on our feelings of inadequacy.” This is particularly true in situations where several members of a friendship circle find themselves sharing a circumstance such as being engaged or having a baby and one member of the group is not sharing those same joys. The dynamics of the group change and jealousy is a frequent visitor to these friendship circles.

Another interesting discussion the author raises is the phenomenon of how two friends may serve as a mirror to each other. She points out that when we see ourselves reflected in our friend, we may not like what we see and often choose denial and then a moving away from this type of friendship. As Davis states, “I have marveled at my own ability to justify my actions or feelings.” Honesty with one’s self helps us manage a friendship like this most productively.

The Friends We Keep is written from a Christian perspective but not over-done with Scripture passages. The research into what other cultures have contributed to the concept of friendship is also interesting. “Friendship was a vital part of the tradition of the early Celtic Christians; its critical importance having originated with the Desert Christians…The Desert Christians ultimately inspired the Celtic Christians in their practice of soul friendship or anamchara.” I learned much about how ancient models of friendship influenced how we view friendship in the modern world.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning about friendship relationships among women. It gives an interesting peek into the ebb and flow of friendships throughout the ages and stages of women’s lives, but it does not attempt to solve the problems of various friendships. It acts simply as a window into them and raises questions for the reader to consider. A discussion guide is included at the end of the book.

Click Here To Purchase The Friends We Keep: A Woman's Quest for the Soul of Friendship