'Jesus said to her, “Mary!”
She turned and said to Him, “Rabboni!” (which is to say, Teacher).'
Almost every time I read this verse my heart is struck and lovesick tears of brokenness mingled with joy flow from my eyes. Mary Magdalena, the one who was forgiven much and loved much was up early outside the empty tomb, lovesick, weeping and seeking her Beloved. Then Jesus, who she thought was the gardener said: “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?”
Their hearts must have leaped (as does mine when I read it).
Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.’”
I can't help but parallel this passage to that which is written in Song of Songs. The Shulamite (us, Mary) is lovesick, desperately seeking her beloved (Jesus). "If you find my beloved, you must tell him I am lovesick" Song of Songs 5:8
The Beloved (Jesus) says to the Shulamite (us, Mary) "You have ravished my heart with one look of your eyes" Song of Songs 4:9 Wow! to think that we ravish the heart of God. Such is His furious love for us. Jesus, who is God but also a man, says to her:
“Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.’”
I may never understand the depth of these words but I perceive that so intense and burning was His love for Mary (and us) that he almost begs her not to embrace Him so He could finish that which He came to do, leave this world and ascend to His Father, His God and our God, making a way for us to be one with the fullness of God. I don't know if Mary was already embracing Him when He said "Don't cling to Me" or if she was about to, but I get the impression that the man Jesus had to tear Himself away, committed and devoted to the will of His Father, or maybe He said it for Mary's sake, since she was so lovesick for Jesus. Perhaps her heart couldn't bear it. Maybe a bit of both?
As Brennan Manning says "Christianity is a love affair!"