After months of dating, discussion and many a late-night phone call, my daughter became engaged. First the engagement party, and then the wedding planning began in earnest. The list is long and familiar to anyone who is blessed to have planned a child’s wedding: setting the date; finding the caterer, photographer, band, florist; outfitting the bride and the rest of the family; makeup and hair-styling—the list goes on and on. The night of the wedding will never be forgotten—from the veiling of the bride to the ceremony itself, the meal and the dancing, the family and the friends—it’s a living dream. Weddings are truly memorable events you savor for years to come.

Weddings are truly memorable events you savor for years to come.

After the wedding, my daughter and her husband moved into their apartment with sparkling new appliances, freshly stocked cabinets and high expectations. The first night’s phone call went something like this: “Mom, how long does it take to broil chicken?” and “What is an easy dinner to cook if I have to work late?” The next night it was, “Is it better to bake or fry hamburgers?” and then it was, “What is the best cleaner to get off grease from the stovetop?” (I imagine she fried the hamburgers.)

As I hung up the phone, I thought about the whole process of wedding planning and the magical time it is, and then how quickly the bride and groom go from being the center of attention to having to cope with the everyday world of domesticity and the realities of life: meal planning, cooking, separating laundry before washing it. And then there is nurturing a career, managing a joint checkbook and keeping to a budget. For some, this is a real first. The bride and groom swiftly become yesterday’s news as they dive into the day-to-day routine of married life. They have memories, pictures and a video, but life is about what comes next—building a home together. A friend with a dry sense of humor once commented, “Yesterday a peacock, today a feather duster!”

When I thought about the process and how quickly the young couple enters the real world, it struck me that this is the way it has been modeled for us by G‑d. The progression of the Torah portions in Exodus took on a new meaning for me this year, especially since the wedding took place during these readings. The Torah relates that after the Exodus from Egypt, the Israelites travel towards Mount Sinai to accept the Torah. The details of this monumental event are well-recorded. G‑d tells Moses to have the Israelites prepare for the giving of the Torah. They have to set the stage, prepare their outfits, and spiritually ready themselves to become the nation of G‑d in totality.

When G‑d gives us the Torah, there is great pomp and fanfare; the whole world stood still for this awesome and life-changing episode. The Torah describes how special it was; we saw the thunder and heard The whole world stood still for this awesome and life-changing episode.the lightning, and the voice of G‑d resounded throughout the world without an echo: It was absorbed into the earth’s very physical existence. Imagine how this fledging nation felt after hearing the first of the Ten Commandments. True, they felt unworthy of hearing the rest directly from G‑d, but the sound of the words Anochi Hashem Elokecha, “I am G‑d your G‑d,” remained imprinted on their very souls, even though they asked Moses to relate the rest of the commandments to them.

How do you follow a Torah portion such Yitro, which details the splendor and majesty of the giving of the Torah? What will G‑d choose to match this amazing event? One might imagine that the next Torah portion would include lofty ideas that would complement and build upon the experiences of the revelation at Sinai—details that would provide fuel for the soul itself, inspiring ideas to bring the soul of each person closer to G‑d and secrets of life that would inspire the nation.

This is not the case. The very next chapter, Mishpatim, opens with the discussion of how to treat Hebrew slaves and Hebrew maidservants. The portion includes many civil laws, including damages done by animals to humans, animals to animals, and damages caused by negligence or carelessness. The next two Torah portions, Terumah and Tetzaveh, detail the materials and measurements used to construct the Tabernacle and its vessels.

Slaves, careless digging of pits, goring oxen, copper, goatskins and handbreadths by cubits are hardly the lofty topics we would consider suitable to follow the holy experience of the giving of the Torah, but these are exactly the details that G‑d chose for us to learn post-Sinai. Why? Why not capitalize on the spiritual experience with even loftier concepts?

The Chassidic masters explain that this is exactly what G‑d is doing. He is showing us that the wedding is amazing, the honeymoon period is elevating—but the real test of a strong relationship lies in the daily, mundane events. Balancing a checkbook may not appear to be so spiritual and weekly grocery shopping may seem more drudgery than romance, but these are the details that matter. And our conduct through these details is what will lead to a healthy and strong relationship.

G‑d is not changing the subject when He moves from the majesty of the giving of the Torah to telling us how to treat others. He is showing us that the way we treat our fellow human beings is as majestic as the giving of the Torah, and how we interact with others is the true test of our commitment to G‑d.

Anyone can dress up to attend a wedding. But true commitment lies in the ability to stay focused on the small, but salient, aspects of daily living.