The Slap- Recovering from a Harm You Caused

By Fred Oduyoye and Rick Lawrence

As everyone in the world now knows, a little more than a week ago actor Will Smith walked onto the Oscars stage and slapped comedian Chris Rock after Rock told a particularly insensitive joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s struggle with alopecia—an immune disorder that causes hair loss. Days after the incident, Smith publicly apologized and resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts. But as far as we know, his attempts to own his actions have not brought about reconciliation, and the world still has no model emerging from this incident for how to respond after you’ve harmed someone (intentionally or unintentionally). 

Here Fred and I talk about the “Slap” heard round the world, and what we can learn about responding when we are the one who has caused the harm…

Post your comments, insights, and responses to The Slap and how we respond when we’re the ones who cause harm in the Comments section below—we’d love to hear your own insights, experiences, and questions!

And check out Fred’s new website for more ways to connect, grow, and get the expert help you need to develop a magnetic reconciling ministry environment… 


Rick Lawrence is Executive Director of Vibrant Faith—he created the new curriculum Following JesusHe’s editor of the Jesus-Centered Bible and author of 40 books, including The Suicide Solution,The Jesus-Centered Life and Jesus-Centered Daily. He hosts the podcast Paying Ridiculous Attention to Jesus.


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