General Principles of Prayer 6
From my father zt”l: Gratitude is measured by degree of benefit not level of effort. The word for gratitude is “Hakorat Hatov”, the recognition that I benefited from you. We do not look at how much it was for that person to help me, but at how much I benefited from his action. I am grateful for all I benefited even if it did not cost the benefactor anything. If someone gives me a lift from the airport, I must have “Hakorat Hatov” even though he was already driving from the airport in my direction. He may have not extended himself very far for me, however, I benefited a great deal from him. I did not have to wait for a bus, I didn’t have to pay, and I did not have to sit in an uncomfortable seat crowded by hot and irritable strangers.
We are grateful for all we have benefited from God despite the fact that He may not have expended much effort. We measure our debt of gratitude by our benefit, not by His effort.