Upon first listen, this song will surely absolutely captivate you because it is very pleasing musically and lyrically.
But let me share my appreciation as I uncover a few gems about the song after a few (around 50?) repeats:
1. CHOICE OF WORDS
This is the first time I heard in a song these very deep Filipino words: “kinalulugdan”, “obra”, “habi”, “manawari”. And although we have here the best English translation of this song (you never fail to surprise us Mary Ozaraga!) which is more than enough for you to easily see why this is a masterpiece, believe me those words go deeper than that.
But it’s not all Tagalog. A common favorite with regards to words is also “kalibutan” which is Bisaya word for world/earth. This is very thoughtful and inclusive. Also, it reminds me of the word “kilabot” which is also fit for a Creator-King, “awesome” in its real meaning.
2. THE WAY THE VERSES ARE WEAVED
“Habi” (weave) was used in the song, and rightly so because of the concept of intentional design. But the songwriters took it to another level when they talked about our humanity in the second verse. Not just a God, but also a personal Lord. Not just a Creator who started all things, but the reigning King who is the Author and Finisher of our faith. From “let there be light” to “walk in the light”, God’s will prevailing in our lives and transforming it, no longer “without form and void”. Manlilikhari is Proverbs 8:22-24 in song form! How could you not break into praise? What other words could you utter other than the lyrics for the bridge of the song?
“The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old. I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning or ever the earth was. When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water.”
3. THE TITLE
It is rare to have these titles in worship songs – the only other song that comes to mind with such a creative one is Waymaker. But this is very interesting, in a way I never thought possible to express – God’s being a Creator, with the careful weaving of the intricate details of our lives and God’s being a King with utmost power, grandeur, and majesty.
If you haven’t listened to this masterpiece, please check it out here: Manlilikhari – Gianne Hinolan
This is the first song of Konekolab SAMBAHAN series of Waterwalk Records, the worship arm of Sony Music Philippines.
Wonderful rendition Ms. Gianne Hinolan – every little detail in the delivery magnified the intended meaning of the song.