This is something I'd like to know more about actually. My impression was always that you shouldn't do good deeds because they'll get you into heaven, you should do good deeds because they're good things to do. By the same token, you shouldn't do good deeds to avoid hell, you should do them because they're good things to do.
I think this "God" would be able to tell the difference between someone who's doing something under duress and another who's doing it free of fear or ulterior motive.
Consequently, the benefits, in this life, of doing good should theoretically be the same for believers and non-believers alike. Whether it leads to cool stuff afterwards is anybodies guess.
If I lead a good life, which can be done without a god, but choose not to do it carrying His banner (there's a lot of banners to fly under His name) why would a loving god punish someone for that?
If you talk about surviving periods of difficulty, I think it shows more character to survive periods of hardship on your own. Yes it is much more difficult to get through a rough patch on your own, but that's why it is such a good thing if you can do it unassisted by man or god. This is why God is often referred to as a crutch (I do not meant to cause offence by the metaphor) because people can overcome a difficulty without having to actually deal with and internalise the problem, which is an easier way to do things, but I don't see it as... good for the soul.