By Richard Sibbes
…There is a life besides the natural life, and the root of it is Christ, who is our life. Life is the best thing in the world, most valued by us; as the devil said concerning Job, “Skin for skin, and all that a man has he will give for his life,” Job 2:4. Life is the foundation of all comforts; life is the energy proceeding from soul and body. So the spiritual life is nothing else but the excellent energy, and strong connected strength of the soul and body renewed, grounded on supernatural reasons, which makes it follow the directions of the word, conquer the flesh, and so by degrees be transformed into the image of Christ, consisting in holiness and righteousness.
First point then is, that there is a better life than a natural life, because there is something in a man that aspires and looks to a better state. A child in the mother’s womb has life and senses in that dark place, but it is not contented there, but is restless as in a prison, tumbles and turns up and down; this life that it has is not to dwell there, but a beginning-life to fit it to live in the more open and spacious world, where it must shortly be sent forth. So in this dark life of ours there is a divine instinct, power, and thinking in men, that nothing here is enough for us. Which shows, that there is a place to satisfy the will and the understanding, and fill the affections; that there is a condition that shall make a man fully happy. That there must be a spiritual life which is this spiritual life; for this life which we live in the flesh is a thing of nothing.
Our little life we live here, what is it? To live a while, to eat and drink and enjoy our pleasures, and then fall down and die like a beast? Oh no but to make a beginning for a better life. If this life be such a blessing, what is then that most excellent spiritual life we speak of? It holds out beyond all. By this spiritual when one is most sick, you will see him most lively and spiritual. When sense, and spirit, and sight, and all fail, yet by reasons drawn from spiritual life he comforts himself in Christ, the glory to come, and what he has done for him.
Excerpt from Works of Richard Sibbes, Kindle Edition, Loc. 53722 [Language modernized in places by this site.]