Imaam 'Abdur-Rahmaan Ibn Naasir as-Sa'di رحمه الله said,
"When the Creator سبحانه و تعالى mentioned His favour upon His servants by facilitating transport through animals and ships, saying:
"That you may settle yourselves upon their backs and then remember the favour of your Lord when you have settled upon them and say, 'Exalted is He who has subjected this to us, and we could not have [otherwise] subdued it. And indeed, to our Lord, will we [certainly] return.'" (Sooratuz-Zukhruf, 43:13-14)
He mentioned therein the three pillars of gratitude, and they are:
1) Acknowledging and remembering the favour of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى
2) Speaking about it (to others) and praising Allaah سبحانه و تعالى for it, and
3) Submission to Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and utilising (the favour) to aid in His worship.
This is because the intent in His saying, "And indeed, to our Lord, will we [certainly] return" is to acknowledge the recompense (on the Day of Judgement) and to prepare oneself for it. The intent behind [the bestowal of] these favours is that they aid the servant in obedience to Allaah for which he was created.
And in His saying, "Then remember the favour of your Lord when you have settled upon them" is to specify the [remembrance of the favour] for this particular situation, at the time of attaining the favour.
Many from the creation are intoxicated by (the abundant) favours which cause them to become heedless of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and bring about insolence and arrogance in them. So this situation in which Allaah سبحانه و تعالى has commanded (the remembrance of the favour) is a cure for this destructive disease. For when the servant remembers that he is engulfed by the favours of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى, (when he recalls) that their foundations, the ease with which they come to him, their causes, their persistence and the repulsion of what clashes with them or diminishes them, (when he recalls) that this is all from the bounty of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى and His benevolence and that nothing is from the servant himself, he will humble himself to Allaah سبحانه و تعالى, lower himself, be grateful to Him and praise Him. The favour will persist through this and Allaah سبحانه و تعالى will place blessing in it. It will become a true favour.
But as for when he meets it with insolence and arrogance and forgets the Bestower of the favour, perhaps he will become arrogant towards the servants of Allaah سبحانه و تعالى on account of these favours. This is retribution which comes in the appearance of a favour and represents the servant being gradually taken by Allaah سبحانه و تعالى (without his realisation) to a sudden removal (of the favour), an onset of punishment and retribution.
We ask Allaah سبحانه و تعالى to bestow upon us gratitude for His favours."
[Tayseer al-Lateef al-Mannaan (Maktabah ar-Rush, pp. 372-372), as quoted in the appendix to the English translation of Qaa'idah fis-Sabr wash-Shukr (A Principle Concerning Patience & Gratitude) by Shakhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah رحمه الله, Hikmah Publications]