For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus.Talk about a powerful way of proclaiming love!
(Philippians 1:8, ESV)
First, Paul is calling down God as his witness. That is a powerful way of saying, "I'm not lying to you here! Before God almighty that knows all things, this is how I feel!"
Then he describes how he yearns for them... he longs for them. The word that is translated, "affection" is the greek word: σπλάγχνον (splánchnon). This word comes from the Greek word for "spleen" and is often translated (in the King James Version) as "bowels." Thayer's adds this to its definition of this Greek word:
The bowels were regarded as the seat of the more violent passions, such as anger and love; but by the Hebrews as the seat of the tenderer affections, esp. kindness, benevolence, compassion; hence our heart (tender mercies, affections, etc.)I hope that is helpful, but still, this might seem weird to us, but it would be like saying that I feel it in the depths of my gut.
Do you have any brothers and sisters in Christ that you feel this way about? Do any feel this way about you?