d) How does the earth compare in size and space to our sun’s closest neighbor star Proxima Centauri?
1. Proxima Centauri is a red dwar star and part of the Alpha Centauri star system. This closest neighbor is 4.22 light years away or 270,000 times farther than the earth is from the sun. If the earth were the size of a golf ball then Proxima Centauri would be only about 83,966 miles away!
2. Proxima Centauri is a small star compared to our sun, just 1/7th the size. That means at our golf ball size scale it would be a ball about 2 ½ feet in diameter and hold only about 185,714 golf balls. In other words you only need to fill the trunk of your car with golf balls. It’s a lot easier to find the golf ball you are standing on in there compared with the one in the school bus. But the trunk of your car is so far away now! Don’t worry God is bigger and can still reach out his hand to pick you up on that one golf ball sized earth among 185,000 or so others.
e) How does the size of the earth compare to Betelgeuse?
1. Betelgeuse is the second brightest star in the constellation Orion located about 427 light years from earth. (At our golf ball size scale it would be over eight million miles away from earth!) If it replaced our sun at the center of our solar system its circumference would fall between Mars and Jupiter.
2. Betelgeuse is 750 times the size of our sun! Take your golf ball and travel to New York City and set your golf ball sized earth next to the empire state building. Now imagine five more empire state buildings stacked on top of the empire state building. That’s how wide the diameter of Betelgeuse would be in comparison to your golf ball sized earth! Betelgeuse is so enormous that if it too were reduced in scale to our golf ball sized earth then you could fit 262 trillion golf balls inside of it—that’s enough golf balls to fill the Superdome—3,000 times! But our God is still bigger! And once more God knows exactly which golf ball you are standing on. God has not misplaced you in the universe because He wants to have a relationship with you.
f) How does the size of our earth compare to the largest know star in the universe Canis Majoris?
1. Canis Majoris is a red hypergiant star located in the constellation Canis Major. This is the largest known star and one of the most luminous stars known. It is located about 5,000 light-years from Earth.
2. How big is Canis Majoris? If our sun were replaced with Canis Majoris its circumference would extend to the orbit of Saturn! If a human could walk on the surface of Canis Majoris at a speed of 3 miles per hour for 8 hours a day, you would have to walk for 650,000 years to circle the star (compared with 2 years 11 months to complete the same task on the Earth, or a mere 310 years 7 months on the Sun).
3. Canis Majoris is so large that if it were reduced in size in proportion to our golf ball sized earth it would hold 7 quadrillion golf balls (7 thousand million million or 7015)– these golf balls would cover the entire state of Texas 2 feet deep. Can you still find yourself on the golf ball that you are standing on? Me? I’ve completely lost my golf ball among the other 699 (trillion), 999 (billion), 999 (million), 999 (thousand), 999 other golf balls! But God has not lost you! The Lord is bigger than Canis Majoris and knows exactly which golf ball you are standing on. Out of all creation you are made in the image of God—made to have the hope of a relationship with God.