Lent, to me, means dreary. I'm not so concerned with abstinence. It's just that the whole forty days of Lent seem dark. No Glorias or Allelujahs in the liturgy. Dreary. And for me, not in a good way. I guess I don't do introspection well.
Years ago, my sister called me up and said, "I know what I am giving up for Lent." she said. "What?" I asked. "Lent." she answered. I got it immediately.
And some people take the Lenten abstinence thing to a game perspective. It doesn't make sense to make it a silly game.
I am Lutheran. I admire Mother Teresa's Catholic charity she began decades ago in Calcutta: simply caring for the dying. Few of us could do what she and her fellow sisters have done, caring for the very poorest of the poor, as they lie dying in gutters and streets in Calcutta.
Here are some quotes from Mother Teresa, which I would prefer to meditate on these forty days, rather than giving up chocolate or soda or Facebook or whatever:
"Let us touch the dying, the poor, the lonely and the unwanted according to the graces we have received and let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work."
"Loneliness and the feeling of being unwanted is the most terrible poverty."
"Each one of them is Jesus in disguise."