Callie Cate is a wife to Daniel and a mother to two young boys. In addition to being a stay-at-home mom, she works part-time as a beautician. Callie and Daniel live in Little Rock, Arkansas, and are members of Midtown Baptist Church.
How do you describe your work?
I care for women by doing their hair and teaching them techniques to maintain it. I provide all hair services—from color to cut to up-dos for special occasions.
As an image-bearer of God, how does your work reflect some aspect of God’s work?
Beauty and body image are hard topics for Christians to tackle because they can lead to idolatry. As image bearers, though, we were made to desire beauty and reflect God and his beauty. As a Christian, I can honor this desire by helping my clients enhance their God-given and God-reflecting beauty.
I know that beauty is not ultimately about us but about giving glory to God. By teaching my teaching my clients what works for their faces or their hair types, I can help them to save time and to feel better about who God made them as physical beings crafted in his image.
How does your work give you a unique vantage point into the brokenness of the world?
My most rewarding project was helping my sister’s mother-in-law shave her head when she was preparing to go through chemotherapy. But I also see a lot of tangible examples of our lives and bodies being broken in my work—from seeing my sister’s mother-in-law broken by cancer to hearing about my clients’ struggles. They tell me about their problems with parenting, struggling marriages, and difficult lives. In that sense, I see how our sin affects others on a daily basis.
Jesus commands us to “love our neighbors as ourselves.” How does your work function as an opportunity to love and serve others?
I get the opportunity to care for people physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Doing hair puts me in a position to listen to others, to witness to people who don’t yet know Christ, and to provide spiritual care to them in their struggles. People are vulnerable with me about their lives since they’re in a place where they feel loved, cared for, and safe. I work really hard not to rush people and really give them the time they need and deserve, which I hope allows them to know they are valued.
Editors’ note: The weekly TGCvocations column asks practitioners about their jobs and how they integrate their faith and work. Interviews are edited and condensed.