We are rewarded for our efforts (actions) in relationship with God.
Matthew 7:21-23 (New King James Version)
I Never Knew You
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
We are not rewarded for efforts and actions alone. We are not rewarded for thoughts. We are not rewarded for feelings. We are not rewarded for relationship in and of itself. We are rewarded for doing the will of God. We are rewarded for actions and efforts that result from our intimate relationship with God where we have determined and know His will without question.
If we seek to live a rewarding life, if we seek to enter the kingdom of heaven, we must live for His reward.