This is an illustration I used for the Awana kindergarten class for the verse of 1 John 4:14, "We love him because he first loved us." I hope it is an inspiration for you.
Mr. Frankman was an old man who lived with his granddaughter, Penny. They lived in a little town surrounded by woods. Early every morning as the sun was coming up he would take his cane and go for a walk with Penny on the paths in the woods. Penny would run and skip on ahead and pick flowers and look for bird's nest while old Mr. Frankman walked slowly with his cane. One early morning Penny heard a whimper in the dark place in the woods, and ran back to tell Mr. Frankman. The old man went through the bushes and looked in the dark place and found a dog. This dog had been the victim of cruel people who threw stones at it and beat it so badly that it was sick and dying.
Mr. Frankman tried to go near it but the dog showed its sharp teeth and growled. Mr. Frankman tried to help it but it bit him. It bit him because all the meanness that had been done to the dog made the dog mean. The bite was so bad Mr. Frankman gave up to go to the Doctor for stitches in his hand.
Penny cried and cried when she saw all the blood and torn flesh. "There is a bad dog in the woods." she said. "It hurt my grandpa."
The next morning Mr. Frankman and Penny went again for their walk in the woods. He heard the dog whimpering again and found the dog just where it was before, since it was too sick and weak to go anywhere. This time Mr. Frankman threw his coat over the head of the dog, but even with his head buried in the coat the dog fought and tried to bite him again. With the coat over the dog he was able to get the it home.
"Don't bring that mean, old, bad dog home," Penny said, "he will bite you again."
Mr. Frankman kept the dog and named it Prince. Just like Penny said, it kept trying to bit him. Mr. Frankman kept feeding it, and every time Prince would try to bite him.
“Get rid of that dog." people said. “He is a bad dog. Take it to the woods and shoot it.”
“No, I believe Prince is worth my love,” Old Mr Frankman said.
Mr. Frankman gave Prince medicine, but the dog still tried to bite him. He gave Prince baths and still Prince growled at him. He gave Prince a home and did everything he could for it. Mr. Frankman kept on loving the dog. For many months this went on. It looked like the dog would always be mean and angry.
"You should get rid of that dog." People still said.
"No. I believe there is something good in him." Mr. Frankman would still say.
After a long while the dog stopped trying to bite the man. After a while Prince got well enough to go for the early morning walks with Mr. Frankman and Penny in the woods. Prince stopped growling at him, and even began to sleep on the floor next to the Mr. Frankman. Prince would lick his hand and let Mr. Frankman pet him. Prince became a faithful friend.
One early morning Mr. Frankman, Penny and the dog went for a walk in the woods. Penny skipped along ahead to look for bunnies and bird's nest while Mr. Frankman slowly walked with his cane.
"Help! Help!" Penny cried. A bear had come across the path. This bear was sick with a maddening fever. It slowly stood up on its hind legs and growled a challenge. Mr. Frankman came running in his old man way swinging the cane which was all he had to defend himself with and was no match for a fever crazed bear. Prince leaped ahead and jumped between the Penny and the bear barking and showing his big dog teeth and growling. The bear charged. The dog met the charge with a hammering lunge against its chest. Prince jumped up and bit the mad bear on the paw and leg, the bear was not hurt because he was so big. He saw the dog was going to give it a real fight so the bear turned around and went back into the woods.
Because the man loved the dog the dog learned to love.